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    Where Does Elsie's Hair Color Come From? A "De-Simplified" Pedigree Lesson
    Pedigree analysis is part of most Genetics curricula, but the examples traditionally used in genetics courses present phenotypes as if they were entirely and inexorably defined by genotype. This does not reflect the current state of understanding...
    pedigreeMultifactorialphenotypic variationpenetranceexpressivityquantitative variation
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    132

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    Fragile States: A Case Study Exploring Genetics, Molecular Biology, and Biochemistry Through the Lens of Fragile X Syndrome
    This case aims to strengthen students’ understanding of molecular biology concepts through study of Fragile X Syndrome (FXS). Students begin by learning the cause and phenotypes of FXS and related conditions. Students then apply genetics...
    gene regulationtranscriptiontranslationFragile X syndrometriplet repeat expansionsex linkagemetabolic pathway
    Lesson
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    Engaging Students in Pharmacogenetics: Patient Case Studies Using the PharmGKB Website
    Cytochrome P450 (CYP) enzymes are important regulators of drug efficacy and toxicity. Genetic variation in CYP isoforms can impact how well patients respond to medications or experience unwanted toxicities. PharmGKB is an online pharmacogenomics...

    Courses: GeneticsGenetics ToxicologyToxicology

    toxicologyPharmacologydrug metabolismpharmacodynamicspharmacogenetics
    Lesson
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    274

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    How to Find a Gene: Retrieving Information From Gene Databases
    A strong understanding of distinct gene components and the ability to retrieve relevant information from gene databases are necessary to answer a diverse set of biological questions. However, often there is a considerable gap between...
    NCBItranscriptiontranslationGene StructureGene databasesEnsembl
    Lesson
    1930

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    297

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    Honoring the Complexity of Genetics: Exploring the Role of Genes and the Environment Using Real World Examples
    Historically, undergraduate genetics courses have disproportionately focused on the impact of genes on phenotypes, rather than multifactorial concepts which consider how a combination of genes, the environment, and gene-by-environment interactions...
    genesenvironmentMendelQuantitative traitsMultifactorialGene by environment interactions
    Lesson
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    150

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    Garden Variety Mutations: Using Primary Data to Understand the Central Dogma in Large-Lecture Introductory Biology
    The ability to interpret and create an argument from data is a crucial skill for budding scientists, yet one that is seldom practiced in introductory courses. During this argumentation module, students in a large lecture class will work in groups...
    mutationtranscriptiongene expressioncentral dogmatranslationgel electrophoresisGenotype/Phenotype
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    2295

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    181

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    A Muscular Dystrophy Case Study Illustrating the Phenotypic Effects of Mutation
    Mutations in genes can lead to a variety of phenotypes, including various human diseases. Students often understand that a particular mutation in a single gene causes a disease phenotype, but it is more challenging to illustrate complex genetic...
    mutationProtein Structureethicscentral dogmahuman disease
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    A Rapid Genetic Screen Using Wisconsin Fast Plants®: A Hands-On Approach to Inheritance of de novo Mutations
    Some concepts in genetics, such as genetic screens, are complex for students to visualize in a classroom and can be cumbersome to undertake in the laboratory. Typically, very large populations are needed, which can be addressed by using...
    mutationInheritancegermlinesomaplant lifecycle
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    Application of a Bacterial Experimental Evolution System to Visualize and Teach Evolution in Action: A Course-Based Undergraduate Research Experience
    Concepts of evolution are typically taught through examples of extremely long timescales, which do not always resonate broadly. Here, we describe a course-based undergraduate research experience tailored for junior and senior undergraduate biology...
    EvolutionmutationcompetitionNatural Selectionregulationstructure and functionreproductive fitnessgenotype to phenotypehomologs
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    1397

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    278

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    Metastatic Mastery: A Case and Game-Based Approach to Learning About Cancer Mechanisms
    Mechanisms that contribute to the development of cancer are numerous and complicated, though most can be traced to a set of mutations in cell cycle regulatory genes that throw the process of cell division off balance. Communication of these...
    mutationcancertranscriptioncell cycletranslationOncogenesTumor-suppressorp53Transcription factor
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    188

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    Escape Zoom!: Reviewing Introductory Evolution Content Using an Escape Room Format
    Reviewing and integrating key concepts and learning goals at the end of a biology course can be overwhelming to students and instructors alike. Often end-of-term review sessions in preparation for final exams are heavily based on memorization, and...
    Evolutionartificial selectionSpeciationextinctionsexual selectionphylogenetic treesmechanisms of evolution
    Lesson
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    391

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    Splicing it Together: Using Primary Data to Explore RNA Splicing and Gene Expression in Large-Lecture Introductory Biology
    At the heart of scientific ways of knowing is the systematic collection and analysis of data, which is then used to propose an explanation of how the world works. In this two-day module, students in a large-lecture course are immersed in a...
    gene regulationtranscriptiongene expressioncentral dogmarepressoralternative splicingmRNA processingActivatorTranscription factors
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    249

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    Learning Quantitative Genetics: Investigation of Genetic Control for Cold Stress Response in Plants
    Course-embedded undergraduate research experiences (CUREs) for students have been shown to increase students’ understanding of the process of science, affirm their scientific identity, and improve retention in STEM fields. Despite many CUREs...

    Courses: GeneticsGenetics

    data analysisrecombinationplantsquantitative geneticsabiotic stress responsegenetic control of complex traitsinheritance of complex traits
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    390

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    Meiosis Remodeled: Inclusion of New Parts to Poppit Bead Models Enhances Understanding of Meiosis
    A long-standing tradition uses strings of poppit beads of different colors to model meiosis, especially to show how segments of paired homologous chromosomes are recombined. Our use of orthodontic latex bands to model cohesion of sister...
    meiosischiasma formationchromosome recombination
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    Teaching the Central Dogma Using a Case Study of Genetic Variation in Cystic Fibrosis
    The central dogma of biology is a foundational concept that is traditionally included in genetics curricula at all academic levels. Despite its ubiquitous presence throughout genetics education, students persistently struggle with both the...

    Courses: GeneticsGenetics

    transcriptioncentral dogmatranslationsequence analysisDNA replicationgenetic variants
    Teaching Tools and Strategies
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    A 360˚ View of COVID-19
    In March 2020, institutions underwent a massive transition to distance learning as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. With so little time to devise new materials to maximize learning in the new virtual environment, instructors devised a variety of...
    geneticsImmunologyBiochemistrybioinformaticsmolecular evolutionpublic healthvirusCOVID19
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    Targeting Misconceptions in the Central Dogma by Examining Viral Infection
    Understanding the central dogma and how changes in gene expression can impact cell function requires integration of several topics in molecular biology. Students often do not make the necessary connections between DNA structure, transcription,...
    datatranscriptionvirustranslationprotein functionmembrane transportPredictions
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    Single Cell Insights Into Cancer Transcriptomes: A Five-Part Single-Cell RNAseq Case Study Lesson
    There is a growing need for integration of “Big Data” into undergraduate biology curricula. Transcriptomics is one venue to examine biology from an informatics perspective. RNA sequencing has largely replaced the use of microarrays for whole...
    bioinformaticscancertranscriptomicshigh-throughputData wranglingSingle cell RNA sequencingq
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    6779

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    1325

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    An undergraduate bioinformatics curriculum that teaches eukaryotic gene structure
    Gene structure, transcription, translation, and alternative splicing are challenging concepts for many undergraduates studying biology. These topics are typically covered in a traditional lecture environment, but students often fail to master and...
    bioinformaticsGenome BrowsergenomicsRNAseqsplicingComputer ModelGene Structure
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    Follow the Sulfur: Using Yeast Mutants to Study a Metabolic Pathway
    Students are frequently overwhelmed by the complexity of metabolic pathways and they think they have "learned" the pathway when they have memorized the individual reactions.  This laboratory lesson helps students to understand the...
    SelectionyeastMetabolismcysteinemediamethioninemutantPathwaysulfur