The Nucleus By: Megan Mercanti
Some History of the Nucleus • Was discovered by Ernest Rutherford, a New Zealand born British physicist, in May of 1911. • In a well-known experiment done by one of Rutherford's students, alpha particles were observed to scatter backwards from a gold foil. Rutherford’s explanation was that the scattering was caused by a hard, dense core at the center of the atom–the nucleus.
Structure • Consists of a: • Nuclear envelope(outer membrane) • Nucleoplasm(chromatin and nucleolus) • Nuclear envelope is a double bound membrane with four phospholipid bilayers and large pores that passes material back and forth.
Function of the Nucleus • Regulates all cell activity(control center of the cell) • Controls the enzymes present • Contains the information for the production of proteins within the DNA • Regulates gene expression
Diseases/Disabilities associated with the Nucleus • Downs Syndrome- the nucleus of the human cell typically contains 23 pairs of chromosomes. Downs Syndrome occurs when the individual has a full or partial extra copy of chromosome 21. • Cancer- in the majority of healthy cells, the nucleus is smooth and has a spherical shape. People with cancer have a nucleus that is abnormal in shape and size characterized by blebs(irregular bulge).
Continued.. • Spinal Muscular Atrophy- caused by a genetic defect in the SMN1 gene. SMN1 is necessary for the development of motor neurons. A diminished abundance of the protein results in death of neuronal cells in the anterior horn of the spinal cord and subsequent system-wide muscle wasting (atrophy).
Interesting facts • Under a light microscope the nucleus looks like a black dot • Humans have 23 pairs of chromosomes, for a total of 46 chromosomes in the nucleus. • Only eukaryotes contain a nucleus
Works Cited • Chodos, Allen, ed. "May, 1911: Rutherford and the Discovery of the Atomic Nucleus." American Physical Society . AMERICAN PHYSICAL SOCIETY, n.d. Web. 7 Mar 2014. <http://www.aps.org/publications/apsnews/200605/history.cfm>. • Davidson , Michael. "Cell Biology and Microscopy Structure and Function of Cells and Viruses." Molecular Expressions. Florida State University, 14 May 2005. Web. 7 Mar 2014. <http://micro.magnet.fsu.edu/cells/nucleus/nucleus.html>. • "Physical Sciences in Oncology." National Cancer Institute. National Cancer Institute. Web. 7 Mar 2014. <http://physics.cancer.gov/research/2013/march/po_news_d.asp&xgt;. • "Spinal muscular atrophy." Wikipedia. Wikipedia, 06 March 2014. Web. 7 Mar 2014. <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Spinal_muscular_atrophy>. • "The Virtual Cell Web Page." . N.p.. Web. 7 Mar 2014. <http://www.ibiblio.org/virtualcell/textbook/chapter3/chapter3.htm>. • "What is Downs Syndrome?." National Downs Syndrome Society. National Down Syndrome Society, n.d. Web. 7 Mar 2014. <https://www.ndss.org/Down- Syndrome/What-Is-Down-Syndrome/>.