In today’s post on biology, I will begin by narrowing our study down to what the MCAT tests. My last post was very vague (understandably, because it was an introduction to the subject). Biology in itself being such a broad topic, it is important to do a little research before you take the MCAT, to know the full range of what is covered on the exam. Molecular cell biology at the university level is undoubtedly something that you should hope to be well-versed in when you sit down to take the test. From now on, think of these biology reviews as being specifically cell biology reviews unless otherwise stated.
In the last post, I asked you to think about biology on a broad scale. In our high school biology classes we focused on, for example, the diversity of living things. We are familiar with living things. They are all around us. But are we familiar the building blocks of all living things, including ourselves? These are cells, and they are the fundamental units of life.
Cells, unlike many of the organisms that consist of them, are too small for the naked eye to perceive. Yet they are more complex than we will probably ever be able to understand in our lifetime. Thousands of research articles are published about cells each year; yet, there is still so much more to know about cells (Karp 2013).
One highly interesting aspect of cells is their diversity, even on such a small scale. Even though all living things are comprised of cells, this does not mean that all cells are the exact same for all living things. Cells from a diverse range of organisms may employ similar levels of organization. However, some cells need oxygen to survive, and some cells do not. Some cells move quickly and are not stable structurally, while others may be mostly stationary and have structural stability (Lodish et al. 2016).
Throughout this review of molecular and cell biology, you will note it to be true that the subject is easily described as reductionist. What this means is that the whole or sum total of parts can be explained by the knowledge of these very parts (Karp 2013). I will begin in the next post by delving deeper into the study molecular and cell biology. Over time, the discussion does tend to get rather intricate, so I will do what I can to keep things interesting for you.
A prospective medical student, looking to help others succeed.