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I'm Kevin. I like playing guitar, basketball, and The Office. Also, I prefer Mac over any other operating system and pretty much all Apple stuff. (The logo at the top was made by me, so there is no link with it.)

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This is a funny video, called Pac Man Fail:




Biology

My favorite thing we did in Biology was when we made "cells" out of jello because we could be creative in designing them. Although we could be creative in doing this, we had to apply our knowledge of cells and diffusion into our design to create a good "cell". This made the project fun and educational.


In-Class Notes 2/3/09

· What is the evidence for evolution?
o The fossil record supports evolution
o Many fossils have been found
· Where are the intermediates?
o Pakicetus- Intermediate stage between a hoofed land animal and whale
· Biogeography as evidence for evolution, a way to recognize evolutionary relations on species by geographic location
· Biogeography provides more evidence for whale evolution
o Pre-fully aquatic whale transitional fossils are found in the same geographic area, Example: Whale collection sites in Pakistan
· Morphology as Evidence for Evolution
o Morphology=structure
o Homologous Structures- similar structures that are found in species that are related by a common ancestor
o Human, cat, whale, and bat arms consist of the same bones and same amount of fingers because they evolved from a common ancestor
· Vestigial structures-homologous structures that may have had important functions in an ancestral species, may have no clear function in some modern descendants
o Examples: Whale vestigial structure, goosebumps (to trap heat, only there is not enough hair)
· Similarities in development
o Examples in embryos: Turtle, chicken, rabbit, human
· Embryological evidence supports whale evolution
o Hind limb buds- note arrow in photograph
o Hair-some whales develop body hair in development and then it falls off
· Molecular data as evidence for evolution
o You can determine relatedness within a species based on DNA evidence, therefore, you can determine relatedness between species based on the same type of evidence
o Supports whale evolution
· Types of evidence:
o Fossils as evidence
o Biogeography as evidence
o Morphology as evidence
o Similarities in development
o Embryological evidence
o Molecular evidence
In-Class Notes-2/2/09
· From these observations:
o Darwin began to question the belief that the earth was young based on the geographic evidence he observed
o He noted the unity and diversity in living organisms
o He concluded that animal and plant characteristics seemed to fit the type of environment they lived in
· By 1840 he had worked out the major features of a theory based on his observations from his journey
· Years went by and it wasn’t until he heard that another scientist, Alfred Russell Wallace, was developing a theory very similar to his own that he decided to publish
· November 24, 1859 Darwin publishes The Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection
· What is evolution? There are two main points:
o Present-day organisms are descendants of ancestral species that are different from the modern species
o The main mechanism for this evolutionary process is Natural Selection
· Natural Selection
o Populations can change over generations if individuals that possess certain heritable traits leave more offspring than other individuals
o Nature “selects” individuals who are the most fit for their environment
· Natural Selection, these must be in place:
o Genetic variation
o Overproduction of offspring
o Struggle for existence
o Differential survival for reproduction
· Honeybees will often overproduce offspring
· Natural Selection cannot give you what you need, it can only select from what is already there
· Due to competition, some will survive better than others



Student Expectations
How Will I Meet This Expectation?
How Did I Meet This Expectation?
Demonstrate ability to
evaluate sources of
biology information on
the internet

I will observe the sources of my
classmates as well as my own to make sure
that they are credible and truly scientific
In my comment on "The Genetics of Race" post, I
evaluated the test and explained how it was potentially
inaccurate and unreliable.
I evaluated the following five sources on the Credible Sources page:
http://answers.yahoo.com
http://sciam.com
http://csmonitor.com
http://sciencedaily.com
http://www.vivo.colostate.edu/hbooks/genetics/medgen/index.html
In doing so, I did not just accept or reject, but I stated
my reasoning behind why I accepted or rejected that
source.
In my blog post "Bacteria Tricked Into Making Their Own Vaccine", I used a scientific website that was approved on the Credible Sources page.
I evaluated Will's sources for his post, "A Need for Play" and approved them to be credible in my comment.
In my comment on Teddy's post, "Sturgeon - The Flying Fish", I evaluated his sources and checked to see that they were credible.
Demonstrate an ability
to read and understand
current biology news
I will review biology news and make sure I
understand them and compare it to other
articles to make sure I am getting reliable
information
In my comment on "Endless Forms Most Beautiful-The
Golden Langur", I showed an understanding of the topic
and introduced new information to share with my
classmates.
In my comment on Will's post, "A Need For Play", I demonstrated
comprehension of the topic and gave my opinions on his work.
In my comment on Teddy's post, "Sturgeon - The Flying Fish", I gained an understanding of the subject and stated my opinion on the issue.
I read and understood Ryan's post, "A Cell for Cells?" and gave my thoughts on the subject.
Demonstrate proper
use of online resources

I will try to get a few reliable scientific sources
when doing research to ensure that my sources are
good and legitimate
In my blog post, "Bacteria Tricked Into Making Their Own Vaccine", I
used a source that was approved on the Credible Sources page and
included a link to the website of the scientist who conducted the study
my paper was based upon.
I hyperlinked all of my sources correctly in my post.
I made sure that I used a creative commons picture in my blog post.
I hyperlinked my picture directly to its source.
Publish work that is
available for peer-review
I will publish my work to my wiki page for peer-review
when possible
I have evidence of evolution and Darwin/Natural Selection notes
available for my peers to review or to use for reference.
I also have my research on the plasma membrane available to my peers.
I have a blog post, called "Bacteria Tricked Into Making Their Own Vaccine",
which is available for my peers to review, so that I may make any necessary
improvements to it.
I posted my blog on my Facebook for my peers to see and review.
Discuss published work
with a practicing biologist
in that particular field

I will share some of my published work with a practicing
biologist who works in a field related to the work and
ask for his opinions on it
I e-mailed Peng George Wang, a biochemistry professor at Ohio State University,
regarding his study to make vaccines for bacterial illnesses, which I wrote a blog post on, asking for his opinions on it.
In my post, I linked to the website with the contact information that I used to contact him.
Provide constructive
peer-review to
classmates
When my classmates publish work that is available to me,
I will try to give constructive criticism to them on it so that
they may improve it if necessary
I reviewed Matt's post, "A Threat to the Penguin Population", and
provided constructive criticism and advice, so that he could make
any necessary changes to improve it.
I commented on Will's post, "A Need For Play", telling him what I thought of his post and his use of sources.
I commented on Teddy's post "Sturgeon - The Flying Fish" and told him my opinions on his work and uses of sources.
In my comment on Ryan's post "A Cell for Cells", I reviewed his post and stated my thoughts on it.
Discuss in-class
assignments

I will try to take in-class discussions or assignments and
apply them to my work either on my wiki or in a blog post
I published my notes on evidence of evolution and Darwin/Natural Selection that I took in class to my page
In my blog post, "Bacteria Tricked Into Making Their Own Vaccine", I discussed polysaccharides, which we studied in class
Apply creativity
to work
I will not just produce stories. I will, when appropriate,
apply creativity to my work by doing things such as make
a comic to represent work or a picture or possibly a video
I made a poll for my blog post, "Bacteria Tricked Into Making Their Own Vaccine", so that
people can vote on what they think about the study or vaccine development.
I made a BitStrips comic for my blog post, "Bacteria Tricked Into Making Their Own Vaccine"

Bacteria Tricked Into Making Their Own Vaccine
By Kevin B.
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Photo Source
A new method found by scientists has made it possible to exploit bacteria into developing mutant sugar molecules on their cell surfaces. The sugar molecules can then be used against the bacteria as a primary element in powerful vaccines. If the vaccines can then be proven to be safe, more could be developed easily and cheaply. The vaccines could then be used to help avert bacterial sicknesses. Most of the vaccines are created with polysaccharides, which we learned in class are long strings of sugar bonds, which can be found on the surface of bacterial cells. Most commonly, the sugars are removed from the cell surface and linked to proteins, when making the vaccine, making them more powerful so that they can kill the bacteria. This is done because polysaccharides by themselves usually don’t produce antibodies that are powerful enough to kill bacteria. But now, with
this new method, there is a simple way to change the structure of the sugars and create the polysaccharide through fermentation. Finally, when the vaccine is injected into the body, the polysaccharides linked with carrier proteins cause the antibodies to see sugar as a foreign body. The antibodies will wait, prepared to attack if they come across the same polysaccharides again, which would signal that the body has been infected with bacteria. If this is proven to be safe and successful, it could help in developing vaccines for bacterial illnesses, such as Escherichia coli, which Peng George Wang, a professor of chemistry and biochemistry at Ohio State University and an Ohio Eminent Scholar, used as a model for the study. He believes that this new method could make things simpler, saying “This way, we don’t have to do anything to modify the polysaccharides. We let the bacteria do it for us”. This improvement should not only simplify things, but should help in quickly and easily producing vaccines for bacterial sicknesses.

What do you think of Wang’s study? Does it seem safe? What do you think of the vaccine and how it could help?

Vote on what you think of the study or vaccine development here.
Here is a BitStrips comic I made about this blog post:


Good questions, interesting, and u have good sources, you might want to make a bit strip and get a picture-teddy




The Plasma Membrane
  • A thin layer found in animal or plant cells
  • Sometimes known as the cell membrane
  • In animal cells, it is the outermost covering of the cell
  • In plants, fungi, and some bacteria, it is found under the cell wall
  • The cell’s outer membrane consists of two layers of phospholipids with embedded proteins
  • It regulates the traffic of chemicals between the cell and its surroundings
  • Separates ions located inside and outside of the cell
    • Ions are electrically-charged
    • Because opposite charges attract separating them is a form of potential energy
    • A video on active transport in the Plasma/Cell Membrane:
    • An interesting video on the Plasma/Cell Membrane.