1. P1LGR1M

    P1LGR1M Member

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    Any Hands-On DNA Experts Here?

    Discussion in 'Research' started by P1LGR1M, Aug 1, 2022.

    I am working "new" DNA into the current project, and a couple questions I would have for those who are hands-on DNA experts or specialists could mean the difference between this aspect of the project sounding plausible—or hokey.

    One avenue I feel might be plausible is junk DNA. Is it possible to use junk DNA as the source for the development of organs humankind doesn't possess now? An example might be, an organ that supplements the brain and allows for telepathy, or, organs of the endocrine system that might allow for shape-shifting. I have been doing some study and I understand that in Science Fiction we have some license in our writing, but I would like it to be as realistic as possible.

    Another area I'd like to get some advice on would be the concept of a microscope far superior to what we have today, and the discovery of "the sub-structure of DNA." Because I am not well-read in newer Sci-Fi I have no idea how many authors have ventured into concepts like these. I don't want to rehash something someone else has already done, but am looking to do something novel, lol. At the very least, to avoid sounding like I'm ripping off someone else's concept.

    Avid Sci-Fi readers, I value your input also, even if you don't have specific knowledge of DNA. If you've read books that utilize this/these concepts, I'd appreciate your take on what it was, how it came across to you while you read (as well as thinking back on it), and whether it either contributed to the story or you felt it was a little too much.

    Thanks in advance!
     
  2. Bruce Johnson

    Bruce Johnson Contributor Contributor Contest Winner 2023

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    I don't know, but this sounds like some transhumanism technology. Maybe this new organ is completely organic using the junk DNA, or maybe it uses some quantum device that uses this junk or universally compatible DNA to interface with our current brains? I don't know.

    I think the important thing is to do enough research that you don't make mistakes like confusing RNA with DNA and vice versa, which I read in a review of a book, but can't remember if it was a successful book or not.
     
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  3. P1LGR1M

    P1LGR1M Member

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    That is precisely what I am speaking about: errors that stand out (not that there are errors that don't stand out, lol).

    And it has to be organic, not something created by a scientist. That's what makes it a little more difficult for someone like me that is only going to have research knowledge that is ignorant of basic info known usually only to those who work in the field/s every day. So it has to stay basic, but include nothing that might give a critic something to vent their frustrations on, lol.

    Thanks for the response!
     
  4. Louanne Learning

    Louanne Learning Happy Wonderer Contributor Contest Winner 2022 Contest Winner 2024 Contest Winner 2023

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    A genetic mutation that results in the development of an entirely new organ would necessitate the activation of a gene very early in the development of the organism, such as in homeobox genes. Homeobox genes are "master developmental control genes" that regulate morphogenesis and cell differentiation.

    https://www.nature.com/articles/pr19972506

    Rather than being found in junk DNA, a more plausible explanation may be found with the insertion of viral DNA into the human genome. Here's how viruses replicate by hijacking cells:

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Viral_replication

    Sometimes, the viral DNA doesn't destroy the cell but becomes a permanent part of the host genome. 8% of human DNA is of viral origin.

    https://www.cshl.edu/the-non-human-living-inside-of-you/

    The "sub-substructure" of DNA is known. DNA is a long chain polymer molecule made up of repeating units of the building block molecules called thymine, cytosine, guanine and adenine.

    https://www.genome.gov/genetics-glossary/Deoxyribonucleic-Acid
     
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  5. Louanne Learning

    Louanne Learning Happy Wonderer Contributor Contest Winner 2022 Contest Winner 2024 Contest Winner 2023

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    Another large-scale way in which DNA can mutate is by the action of transposons. Transposons are called "jumping genes". A transposon is a DNA sequence that moves from one location to another in the genome, sometimes resulting in altered genetic activity.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Transposable_element#:~:text=A%20transposable%20element%20(TE%2C%20transposon,of%20the%20same%20genetic%20material.
     
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  6. P1LGR1M

    P1LGR1M Member

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    Thanks, Louanne, all of these are great issues, and I will look at all of them.

    This is particularly relevant due to virus pan and plandemic.

    Another interesting issue to be understood on my part.

    Poor word choice on my part. Imagine if there were a way to see further into the bases and finding bases for them. A substructure of the substructure, so to speak.

    It's a reverse of the concept of imagining our universe being the substructure of another universe. That we are the "molecular structure" for something far larger than us, lol.

    That is awesome. I can definitely work with that.

    One of the things I would like to get answered, though, is whether there is still a plausible concept of "junk DNA," if it were somehow made active, giving men and women abilities (or allowing for enhanced organ development) they currently do not have. As I said, one of my weaknesses is not being that familiar with Sci-Fi and some of the complex concepts we see in sci-fi sometimes. I have read a number of articles on junk DNA and still researching it, but sometimes it's just as easy to simply ask someone.

    An organic approach is critical to the basic premise of the substructure of the plot, lol, so again I am thankful for the liberties we writers can take with science, but it has to seem reasonable. If I can make it seem reasonable to a scientist that enjoys sci-fi, then I have accomplished my goal.

    That's the tough part.

    Thanks for the response and links!
     
  7. Louanne Learning

    Louanne Learning Happy Wonderer Contributor Contest Winner 2022 Contest Winner 2024 Contest Winner 2023

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    You are very welcome.

    Ooh, interesting concept! What lies within the atoms linked together to form the bases?

    Well, perhaps a piece of junk DNA can be activated and turn out to be the on-off switch for a whole series of other genes.

    Genes are turned on and off (i.e. are expressed so they are transcribed and translated into proteins) by other genes.

    Researchers have captured video showing how pieces of DNA once thought to be useless can act as on-off switches for genes.

    https://www.princeton.edu/news/2018/07/23/imaging-living-cells-reveals-how-junk-dna-switches-gene#:~:text=These%20pieces%20of%20DNA%20are,turn%20on%20or%20off%20genes.
     
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  8. P1LGR1M

    P1LGR1M Member

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    Exactly.

    That is just part of the plot, lol. In addition is DNA Lost, or in other words, a more complex substructure that has been lost due to a decline in the universe itself. That which once existed but is now gone and has left no evidence by which it might be studied.

    Until now ...

    Cue ominous score ...

    (Duh duh duh duh, Dun—)

    No, not that one—that's Star Wars!

    And it is that type of concept I am trying to develop, lol. I've already written into the storyline something along these lines, and I don't think I have to make it a research journal, but throwing in a few things that are part of the current scientific understanding and then taking that to the unknown and "could-be" is the goal.


    And if a gene that turns on genes is somehow turned on ...

    (Duh du, Duh du, Duh du ...)

    Okay, I can live with the Jaws theme ...

    As a notorious rabbit hunter, one of the trails I just found myself on as a result of the second link is submicroscopic imaging. Just watched the world's smallest movie by IBM. Not a big sports fan so regretted buying popcorn.

    Now I have another term I can corrupt: micro-electron diffraction.

    Oh wait, I meant another term I can employ and slightly bend to my own objectives.

    (Bah ba ba bah, ba ba ba, bah ba ba bahhhh, ba buh bah bah bah ...)

    You'll have to guess this one, but it starts with a
    Raiders of the Lost Ark, er, I mean an R ...

    Okay, thanks again!
     
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  9. Louanne Learning

    Louanne Learning Happy Wonderer Contributor Contest Winner 2022 Contest Winner 2024 Contest Winner 2023

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    You're welcome!

    Isn't writing fun?
     
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  10. P1LGR1M

    P1LGR1M Member

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    I'm having a blast, lol.

    Some of the scenes simply go beyond fun, for me.
     
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