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Biology

Terms

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cellulose
polysaccharide that is the main component of plant
homozygous
has two identical alleles for a particular trait; true-breeding or purebred, ex. PP or pp
polysaccharide
large carbohydrate made up of monosaccharides, ex. starch and glycogen
chemical digestion
the digestion process in which enzymes are used to break foods into their smaller chemical buiding blocks
skeletal muscle
voluntary, striated, multi-nucleate muscle that moves bones
mechanical digestion
the physical breakdown of food into smaller pieces
evaporation
process by which liquid water turns into a gas (water vapor) when heated
herbivore
consumer that eats plants
liver
organ that makes bile to break down fats; also filters poisons and drugs out of the blood
active transport
movement of molecules through protein channels in the membrane from low to high concentration requiring energy (ATP)
smooth muscle
involuntary muscle found in internal organs
heterozygous
has two different alleles for a particular trait; hybrid, ex. Pp
fossil
preserved remains of an ancient organism
spinal cord
cord of nerve tissue that conducts messages between the brain and the peripheral nerves
lysosome
filled with enzymes to breakdown dead cell parts and foreign objects; only found in animal cells
genotype
genetic makeup of an organism
cancer
uncontrolled cell division
amino acid
building block or monomer of a protein
heterotroph
organism that relies on other organisms for food; consumer
photosynthesis
using sunlight and carbon dioxide to make food (carbohydrates)
Eukaryota
domain of organisms that contain nuclei, includes animals, plants, fungi, and protists
centriole
structure that helps to form the spindle
endocrine system
collection of glands that secrete hormones into the blood which regulate growth, development, and homeostasis
prokaryote
cell without a nucleus, it contains a cell membrane, cytoplasm, and ribosomes; bacteria
incomplete dominance
creates a blended phenotype; one allele is not completely dominant over the other
gland
an organ that secretes hormones into the bloodstream
ecology
study of interactions between organisms and their environment
nutrient
chemical that an organism needs to live
esophagus
muscular tube connecting the pharynx to the stomach
rRNA
ribosomal RNA; type of RNA that makes up part of the ribosome
food web
network of all the food chains in an ecosystem
consumer
organism that relies on other organisms for food; heterotroph
phenotype
physical characteristics of an organism
theory
well-tested, well-supported explanation that unifies a broad range of observations
prophase
first phase of mitosis in which chromosomes become visible and nuclear membraine disappears
species
two organisms that are so similar they can interbreed in nature and produce fertile offspring
ecosystem
all the organisms in a particular location, including their non-living environment
motor neurons
neurons that carry outgoing information from the central nervous system to the muscles and glands
independent assortment
principle that genes do not influence each other's inheritance because they are separated independently during meiosis
omnivore
consumer that eats both plants and animals
cell cycle
cell grows, prepares to divide, then divides to start growth process again; interphase + M phase
Punnett square
diagram that shows the possible results of a genetic cross; parents' gametes on top and left, offsprings' genotypes inside
transpiration
evaporation of water from plant leaves
axon
long fiber that carries electrical impulses away from the nerve cell body
interphase
cell grows, performs its normal functions, and prepares for division; consists of G1, S, and G2 phases
parasitism
symbiotic relationship in which one organism benefits and the other organism is harmed
speciation
formation of a new species
producer
organism that makes its own food using sunlight or chemicals; autotroph
DNA
double stranded nucleic acid that stores and transmits genetic information
ligament
band of connective tissue that holds the bones together
catalyst
substance that speeds up the rate of a chemical reaction
mutation
a change or error in the DNA sequence
nondisjunction
error in meiosis in which homologous chromosomes don't separate; gametes end up with wrong number of chromosomes
kingdom
second largest taxonomic group; there are six - animalia, plantae, protista, eubacteria, archaebacteria, fungi
nucleolus
helps to assemble ribosomes
vein
blood vessel that carries blood toward the heart when pumped by skeletal muscles
biodiversity
variety of organisms that exist in the biosphere
artery
thick-walled muscular blood vessel that carries blood away from the heart
polymer
large molecule made up of smaller building blocks or monomers
cardiac muscle
type of muscle found in the heart which generates its own electrical signal to contract
homeostasis
the process by which organisms keep their internal environment relatively stable
speciation
formation of a new species as a result of reproductive isolation
cilium
hairlike projections that help some cells move
energy pyramid
diagram that shows the energy available to each trophic level in an ecosystem; 10% is passed on to upper levels, the rest is lost as heat
digestive system
body system the breaks down food and absorbs nutrients
emigration
individuals leaving a population
antibody
specialized protein made by the body to fight off future infections from a disease-causing organism
symbiosis
relationship in which two species live closely together
greenhouse effect
heat reatined by the the gases of the Earth's atmosphere to maintain the Earth's temperature range
large intestine
organ that absorbs water from undigested material
nucleus
contains the DNA and controls all of the cell's acitivities
Golgi apparatus
stack of membranes that modify proteins and creates "packages" to send them to other locations
sensory neurons
neurons that carry sensory information from receptors to the central nervous system
reproductive isolation
separation of species that prevents them from interbreeding and producing fertile offspring
species
two organisms that are so similar they can interbreed in nature and produce fertile offspring
larynx
voice box; passageway for air moving from pharynx to trachea; contains vocal cords
mRNA
messenger RNA; type of RNA that carries instructions from DNA in the nucleus to the ribosome
trait
specific characteristic that varies from one individual to another
insulin
protein hormone that helps to decrease blood sugar
passive transport
movement of molecules across a membrane from high to low concentration without energy, ex. diffusion, osmosis, facilitated diffusion
population density
number of individuals per unit area
multiple alleles
three or more alleles exist for a particular trait
population
members of a species in a defined area
homologous structure
structures that have different mature forms but develop from the same embryonic tissues
ventricles
two lower, muscular chambers of the heart which pump blood to the lungs and the rest of the body
cell division
division of a parent cell into two identical daughter cells
enzyme
specialized protein that speeds up a chemical reaction by decreasing activation energy; typically end in "ase"
alveoli
thin-walled microscopic air sacs in the lungs where the exchange of oxygen and carbon dioxide takes place
cytokinesis
division of the cytoplasm (cytosol and organelles)
hormone
chemical messengers secreted by glands into the blood
organic compound
compound that contains carbon bonded to hydrogen and is found in living things
impermeable
molecules are not able to pass through the membrane
nucleic acid
contains carbon, hydrogen, oxygen, nitrogen, and phosphorous; involved in protein synthesis
G1 phase
stage of interphase in which cell grows and performs its normal functions
ribosome
synthesizes proteins
bone marrow
soft tissue found in the center of bone that produces blood cells
starch
polysaccharide made up of a chain of glucose molecules; food storage molecule for plants
facilitated diffusion
movement of molecules through protein channels in the membrane from high to low concentration
evolution
change over time; process by which modern organisms descended from ancient organisms
organelle
a specialized cell structure that performs a specific job within a cell
monosaccharide
building block of a carbohydrate; simple sugar
metabolism
all of the chemical reactions that build or break down materials within an organism
true-breeding
inherited two identical alleles for a trait; homozygous or purebred
anaphase
phase of mitosis in which sister chromatids are pulled to opposite sides of the cell
cellular respiration
process that breaks down food to make ATP and release carbon dioxide as waste
transcription
copying the code from DNA onto mRNA
vacuole
stores water and nutrients for the cell; very large in plant cells
negative feedback loop
an opposite action to what is occurring in the body to regain homeostasis, ex. if body temperature rises too high, body tries to lower it
hybrid
offspring of a cross between parents with different traits; heterozygous
base
compound that releases OH- ions in solution; pH greater than 7
carnivore
consumer that eats animals or meat
nuclear envelope
membrane surrounding the nucleus
endoplasmic reticulum
internal transport system of the cell, modifies proteins, and synthesizes lipids
red blood cells
blood cells containing hemoglobin that carry oxygen through the bloodstream
mitochondrion
breaks down food to make ATP
codominance
both genes contribute to the phenotype of the organism, ex. spotted or striped
gene
section of DNA that codes for a protein and determines a trait
pseudopod
projection of cytoplasm that some protists use for movement and feeding
chemical reaction
process that changes one set of chemicals into another set of chemicals
small intestine
organ that completes the chemical digestion of food and absorbs the nutrients
denitrification
conversion of nitrates in the soil by bacteria into nitrogen gas
geographic isolation
type of reproductive isolation in which two populations are separated by geographic barries like mountains or bodies of water
decomposer
organism that breaks down and absorbs nutrients from dead organisms
protein
contains carbon, hydrogen, oxygen, and nitrogen; makes up cell/body structures and enzymes
rectum
the lower part of the large intestine where feces are stored
fatty acid
with glycerol, make up the building blocks of lipids
metaphase
phase of mitosis in which chromosomes line up in the center of the cell
centriole
organize the spindle fibers to separate chromosomes during animal cell mitosis
chloroplast
uses sunlight to make carbohydrates in plants, some bacteria and protists
community
populations of different organisms living in a defined area
nucleotide
building block or monomer of a nucleic acid; commonly recognized by its nitrogen bases as A, T, C, or G
plasma membrane
thin flexible barrier that regulates what enters and exits the cell; composed of two layers of lipids
cholesterol
specialized lipid that is used in cell membranes and making hormones
tendon
a band of fibrous tissue that connects muscle to bone
biodiversity
the variety of all living things in the biosphere
activation energy
energy needed to start a reaction
commensalism
symbiotic relationship in which one organism benefits and the other organism is not affected
polypeptide
synonym for protein; chain of amino acids
kidneys
organs that filter nitrogen wastes from blood to make urine
reactant
chemical that enters a chemical reaction
domain
most inclusive taxonomic group, larger than kingdom; three exist - bacteria, archaea, eukaryota
G2 phase
stage of interphase in which cell duplicates its cytosol and organelles
chromatin
DNA that is coiled around proteins
translation
process by which a ribosome uses the code on mRNA to make proteins
meiosis
type of cell division that creates gametes; cell divides twice to create four cells that are genetically unique
excretion
elimination of wastes from the body (urine, carbon dioxide, sweat)
natural variation
differences among individuals of a species; results from mutation and sexual reproduction
gamete
sex cell; sperm or egg
cytoplasm
material between the cell membrane and the nucleus
dominant
trait that will show up in an organism's phenotype if gene is present
compound
the chemical combination of 2 or more elements in specific amounts
pharynx
the throat; last place food and air mix
RNA
single stranded nucleic acid used for protein synthesis
nitrogen fixation
process in which bacteria convert nitrogen gas into nitrogen compounds plants can use to make proteins
vestigial organ
organ so reduced in size, it does not serve an important function; may be homologous to structures in other organisms
nucleotide
building block of a nucleic acid (DNA and RNA)
carbohydrate
contains carbon, hydrogen, and oxygen; main source of energy for body, commonly end in "ose"
amino acid
building block of a protein
predation
interaction in which one organism hunts, captures, and feeds on another organism
probability
likelihood an event will occur
flagellum
whiplike structure some cells use for propulsion
semi-permeable
characteristic of a cell membrane which allows some molecules to pass through but not others
replication
process in which DNA is duplicated
ATP
molecule that stores the useable energy created during cellular respiration
pH scale
measurement system used to indicate how acidic or basic a substance is; measures the concentration of H+ ions
tRNA
transfer RNA; type of RNA that carries amino acids to the ribosome
cell wall
provides structure and support around cell membrane of plants, fungi, and some bacteria
recessive
trait that will only appear in the phenotype if organism inherits two of them; covered up by the dominant gene
mutualism
symbiotic relationship in which both organisms benefit
adaptation
inherited characteristic that increases an organism's chance of survival
spindle
microtubule structure that separates chromosomes during mitosis
atom
particle made up of protons, neutrons, and electrons
mitosis
division of the nucleus or chromosomes
habitat
where an organism lives
systemic circulation
circulation of oxygenated blood from the left side of the heart to the body and back to the right side of the heart
circulatory system
body system consisting of the heart and blood vessels that circulate blood through the body
Fungi
kingdom of hetertrophs that obtain nutrients through absorption, ex. mushrooms, yeasts
codon
three mRNA nucleotides that code for a specific amino acid
capillary
tiny, thin-walled blood vessel where substances (gases and nutrients) are exchanged between the blood and the body cells
trachea
windpipe; airway connecting the pharynx to the bronchi
glycogen
compound used by animals to store carbohydrates in the liver and skeletal muscles
taxonomy
classification of organisms
nervous system
consists of brain, spinal cord, and nerves and regulates the body's responses to internal and external stimuli
denaturation
when an enzyme changes shape and no longer functions due to high temperatures or wrong pH
glycerol
with fatty acids, make up the building blocks of lipids
cytoskeleton
network of proteins in the cytoplasm that help cell maintain its shape
glucose
simple sugar that is used to make ATP through cellular respiration
osmosis
movement of water across a membrane from high to low concentration without energy
carbon dioxide
gas that is a reactant of photosynthesis and a waste product of cellular respiration
stomach
muscular sac that churns food and secretes hydrochloric acid to start breaking down proteins
diffusion
movement of molecules across a membrane from high to low concentration without energy
pulmonary circulation
circulation from the right side of the heart to the lungs and back to the left side of the heart
hemoglobin
specialized protein that carries oxygen on red blood cells
genus
first part of an organism's scientific name
Protista
a single celled plant or animal, ex. amoeba, paramecia, euglena
detritivore
organism that feeds on animal and plant remains that it did not capture; scavenger
respiratory system
system responsible for taking in oxygen and releasing carbon dioxide using the lungs
immigration
individuals joining a population
acid
compound that release H+ ions in solution; pH less than 7
crossing-over
process by which homologous chromosomes exchange pieces, resulting in greater genetic variety
lipid
huge molecule that contains carbon, hydrogen, and a little oxygen; includes fats, oils, and waxes
cartilage
tough, flexible tissue that covers the ends of bones and decreases friction
product
chemical that results from a chemical reaction
neuron
nerve cell; conducts electrical signals
sex-linked trait
trait related to a gene that is found on the X or Y chromosomes
allele frequency
how often a form of a gene appears in a gene pool
biosphere
part of Earth that living organisms inhabit
monomer
building block or small unit of a polymer; can be linked into chains
gene pool
combined genetic information of of all the members of a population
allele
form of a gene
natural selection
individuals that are better suited to their environment survive and reproduce most successfully; survival of the fittest
polygenic trait
trait controlled by two or more genes; shows a wide variety of phenotypes
substrate
reactant in a chemical reaction that happens in a living thing
food chain
series of steps in which organisms transfer energy by eating and being eaten
autotroph
organism that makes its own food using sunlight or chemicals; producer
gamete
sex cell, sperm or egg
telophase
last phase of mitosis, chromosome are in two new cells and nuclear membranes start to reform
atria
two upper chambers of the heart pump blood into the ventricles
eukaryote
cell with a nucleus and membrane bound organelles; animals, plants, protists, fungi
S phase
stage of interphase in which DNA is replicated
carrying capacity
largest number of individuals of a population that the environment can support

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