Sunday, May 1, 2011

Mutations cased by Radiation

Radiation is known as escaped energy particles that are traveling through space. More specifically, there are two different types of radiation; Ionizing radiation and non-ionizing radiation. Ionizing radiation is radiation that has enough energy to ionize an atom and non-ionizing radiation refers to radio waves and visible light.Radiation can come from just about anywhere. It can be produced naturally or by man-made products. The naturally occurring radiation comes mosthly from cosimic rays and decaying material. Moan-made radiation comes from sources such as X-rays and other medical methods, nuclear plants, and military weaponry.

A mutation is any change in DNA structure that should not have happened and brings about a change in what the sequence of that part of the DNA will code for. In other words, mutations are changes in genomic sequences. There are different types of mutations that can take place. Point mutation is where a nucleotide gets exchanged for a different nucleotide. Insertion mutats are where extra nucleotides are added into the genomic sequences. when part of the genomic sequence is completely removed, it is known as a deletion mutation. Amplifications is a type of mutation where a specific gene is copied multiple tiems which means it is going to have a strong, longer lasting effect than normal.

When it comes to what type of mutations occur because of Radiation, it all depends on the type of radiation that caused the mutation. Ultra Violoet rays (UV rays) can cause two adjacent thymines to bond together. This will cause the DNA to "clump" up and cause major major problems when the DNA starts to be replicated. Other types of mutations such as X-rays and gamma rays can cause every single type of mutation known. It depends on the duration of the exposure as well as the intesnsity of the radiation; this is why people have to have lead vests placed over them when they are receiving x-rays at the hospital.

Radiation can be found everywhere on Earth and it can have negative effects on DNA depending on how intesnse the radiation is and how long the person was exposed to it. Radiation is naturally occuring as well as produced by man-made products, there is no complete way to escape it, people just have to learn how to protect themselves from it the best they can.