Describe the structure of a protein encoding gene in a mammalian cell and explain the functions of the different parts of the gene.


Examination question 1:

  1. Describe the structure of a protein encoding gene in a mammalian cell and explain the functions of the different parts of the gene.
  2. Explain how gene expression may be regulated at different levels.
  3. Explain the terms “oncogene” and “tumour suppressor” gene and give examples of both types of genes.

Examination question 2:

  1. Explain the terms “mutation” and “genetic polymorphism”.
  2. Explain the terms “poin mutation”, “deletion”, “insertion” and “silent mutation”.
  3. Explain on a general basis why some types of mutations have more serious consequences than others.
  4. Give examples of endogenous (inside the cell) and exogenous (environmental) factors that can cause mutations.

Examination question 3:

Diabetes mellitus has increased significantly in incidence in recent years. It is becoming a major health issue in the society.

  1. Discuss environmental- and life style factors that may have contributed to this increase in the incidence of diabetes mellitus.
  2. Which main types of diabetes mellitus are known and how can these be characterised at the molecular level?
  3. Explain how the biosynthesis and secretion of insulin are regulated in B-cells in pancreas.
  4. Describe briefly the late complications that are seen in diabetes mellitus.

Examination question 4:

Cardiovascular disease is the major cause of death in Norway and other western countries. Among this class of disease ischemic heart disease is the most common type.

  1. Explain what is meant by ischemic heart disease and describe the most important signs and symptoms in this disease.
  2. Explain the mechanism of cholesterol deposition in the artery vessel wall.
  3. Describe the development of thrombosis at the cellular and molecular level.

Examination question 5:

Inheritable disease may be monogenic or multigenic (polygenic).

  1. Explain what is meant by the terms monogenic- and polygenic disease and give at least 3 examples (without describing the diseases) of each class.
  2. Describe the disease cystic fibrosis and explain the molecular basis for development of the disease.

(Page 2 of 3)

Examination question 6:

PSI-Blast is the most popular tool for sensitive searching in protein sequence databases.

  1. Describe the main steps in the function of PSI-Blast. Emphasize in particular the unique properties of PSI-Blast compared to standard Blast (also called “gapped Blast”).
  2. PSI-Blast may for example be used to search with a novel sequence for potential homologs with known 3D structure. Below is shown an alignment from such a run. Explain “Query:” and “Sbjct:”, which one represents the novel sequence, and which one represents the potential homolog? Explain how to read the line between ”Query:” and ”Sbjct:”.

(page 3 of 3)

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