Who Is Gregor Mendel?

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Image Source: Wikipedia

Image Source: Wikipedia

zWho is Gregor Mendel? Gregor Mendel is an Australian monk who performed experiments that helped answer questions about heredity more than 150 years ago. Mendel’s research into the questions of heredity gave scientists a basic understanding of genetics. Genetics is the study of how traits are passed from parents to offspring.

Mendel began his experiments with plants that were true-breeding for the trait he would test. When a true-breeding plant self-pollinates, it always produces offspring with traits that match the parent plant. When a true-breeding pea with wrinkled seeds self-pollinates, it produces plants with wrinkled seeds.

During the 1800s, Mendel studied genetics by doing controlled breeding experiments with pea plants.

Pea plants were ideal for genetic studies because:

    • They reproduce quickly. Mendel was able to grow many plants and collect a lot of data
    • They have easily observable traits (such as flower color or pea shape)
    • Mendel could control which pairs of plants reproduced.

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