Somatic vs01:45

Somatic vs. Germ-Line Mutations

Mutations are changes in DNA.  They are random and can be helpful, neutral, or harmful to the organism.  There are two main types of mutations: Somatic Mutations (aren't passed down to offspring) and Germ Line Mutations, whch occur in reproductive cells and are passed down to offspring (Zbar, Kishida & Chen, 1999).  

Effects of Germ Line MutationsEdit

1. No Noticable Effect: The mutation could exists in a cell in which there are no noticable changes

2. Small Change in Phenotype: Organism looks the same, except for a small change

3. Big Change in Phenotype: Large changes occur and could even lead to the death of the organism

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The two basic classes of mutations are somatic mutations and germ-line mutations. Retrieved from:


Zbar, B., Kishida, T., & Chen, F. (1999). Germline mutations in the von hippel-lindau disease (vhl) gene in families from north america, europe, and japan. Human Mutation8(4), 348-357.

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