fourth quarter biology portfoliio


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Page 1: Fourth Quarter Biology Portfoliio
Page 2: Fourth Quarter Biology Portfoliio

Christopher Long

The Perch

Kingdom: Animalia

Phylum: Chordata

Subphylum: Vertebrata

Class: Osteichthyes

Genus: Perca

Species: Flavescens

Page 3: Fourth Quarter Biology Portfoliio

I. Purpose:

The purpose is to examine the Perch internally and externally by dissection.

II. Materials:

1. Dissection tray

2. Perch

3. Scalpel

4. Scissors

5. Forceps

6. Dissecting Probe

7. Dissecting Needle

Page 4: Fourth Quarter Biology Portfoliio

III. Methods:

A. External:

The dissector began his analysis by measuring the length of the perch from anterior to posterior, and

upon finding it to be 17 cm long, began a general examination of the perch's exterior. The dissector first

noted that although the body of the perch subsisted of three subsections, including a pointy, short, head

region, a long, thick trunk region, and a tubular tail section which branched into the caudal fin, certain

characteristics were present throughout its exterior anatomy, including a surface composed of scales

who's feel varied between scratchy and smooth depending on direction he approached them, a

coloration that varied, at times ambiguously, between lightest pink and dark black, and a barely

perceptible layer of slime, which coated the exterior. The dissector flipped his perch, so that the ventral

side shew, and observed that the coloration on the underside of the perch to be white, tinted with

orange, before he briefly probed the small anus with his dissection probe. The dissector then flipped the

perch, so that it rested on its ventral surface, and began a detailed examination of the head section. The

dissector noted that paired eyes of a dull blue color lay on either side of the perch's hard, tough skull,

and that immediately between them, on the ventral–most surface of the perch lay two small, white

openings known as sinouses, located inside of small pits. The dissector probed them with his dissecting

probe, and deduced that they did not extend into the brain, as his probe reached the opening's end,

before he found another set of sinus openings, created by a genetic irregularity, which astonished him.

Next, the dissector located the anterior most point of his perch, the jaw, and identified it's two

constituant parts; the black, hard maxilla, or upper jaw, and orange colored lower jaw, or mandible, that

jointed to it from beneath. The dissector used his dissecting probe to pry apart the jaws, and then

examined their interior. Extending upward from the lower jaw of the perch, the dissector found prickly,

transparent teeth which curved slightly inward, and after examining the seemingly-toothless upper jaw,

he located the smooth, pink tongue, slightly posterior to both structures, which filled most of the mouth

cavity. The dissector then closed the jaws, and then examined a fleshy protrusion on the ventral side of

the head, the white, smooth Isthmus, that divided the paired, hard, black gill coverings known as

operculum, which extended downwards from the sides of the perch, and ran from the area behind the

jaw, to the small, diamond–shaped pre operculum, that shared it's features. The dissector noted that the

operculum extended over sections of both the head, and the trunk, before he lifted it, and saw a section

of the soft, white, pink-tinted gill located underneath. Next, the dissector began a general analysis of

the perch's trunk, beginning with the thin, black, lateral line, which extended from the head of the

organism, and traveled through both the perch's trunk, and tail, extending dorsal to the gills along the

side of the perch. The dissector then examined the non-paire dorsal fins of the animal, starting with the

anterior dorsal fin, which he observed to be black in color, and composed of spines, and moving on to

the posterior dorsal fin, which he observed to be of similar color, but smaller, and composed of soft

rays. Posterior to these, at the end of the fishes tail, the dissector observed the singular black caudal fin,

composed of soft rays, and underneath, a little to the anterior, he saw the lone anal fin, composed of

rays and spines, while dorsal to this, on either side, he observed the paired, golden orange, pectoral

fins, composed of two spines, and many soft rays. Lastly, the dissector observed the soft, clear, paired

pectoral fins, located dorsal to the pelvic fins, just behind the operculum, and noted that between the

rays or spines of each gill, there was a thin membrane of similar color, that held the fin together. The

dissector the concluded his external observations, as there was nothing left to examine.

Page 5: Fourth Quarter Biology Portfoliio

B. Internal:

The dissector began his examination of the perch's exterior by locating the operculum, located toward

the anterior of the perch, and by use of his scissors, making an incision from 1cm behind the fish's eye,

and moving upward until the operculum's connection to the exterior was totally severed, revealing in its

wake four pairs of soft, light-orange semicircular gills, attached to the perch's interior. Using his

forceps, the dissector tugged out a single pair pair of gills, and carefully examined them, noting the

thick, white cartilaginous gill arch that composed the core, the white, triangular, soft, tooth shaped gill

rakers which projected from the gill arch toward the interior, and the soft, pinkish white gill filaments,

which extended outward from the the gill arches in small folds. The dissector could not locate the

capillaries, or observe any other feature of the gills, so he ceased examining them and placed the

remaining gills in a pile on his dissecting tray. The dissector then inserted his scissors under the ventral

integument through the perch's anus, and despite heavy resistance, cut along the length of the perch,

halting about 1 cm from the eye, before cutting perpendicular to his previous cut, the dissector made an

incision from the ventral side of the perch to immediately above the lateral line, and repeated the

process, cutting through the integument which lay above the anus with his scissors. Using his scalpel,

the dissector then made a horizontal cut through the tough muscle along the fish's side, and thus formed

a window into the fish's body, which he carefully removed in order to see the fish's internal anatomy.

The dissector began at the dorsal most point in his window, by examining the small, flexible, whitish-

clear ribs extending from the hard, segmented backbone, before he noted that layers of thick, tough

orange muscle still covered half of the visible interior, and set out to remove the unwanted tissue with

his scalpel, carefully peeling it from the fish's organs. Next, the dissector examined the elongated, soft

black kidney, which ran along the dorsal most part of his window cut, slightly under the rib cage, and

eventually tapered into the gray, slightly bulbous Bladder, which after a short run, dropped into the

urogenital opening. The dissector then examined the area ventral to these, and observed the elongated,

black membranes of the deflated swim bladder, before noting that the thin, tubular white esophagus ran

ventral to it from the anterior of the perch, and into the stomach. The dissector ignored the stomach, but

noted that the esophagus passed immediately over the fish's dark gray heart, located slightly beneath

the space left by the gills, on its way to the fish's mouth, before he examined the heart in depth, noting

that it was composed of both a large chamber known as the atrium, and a smaller, but more muscular

chamber known as the ventricle, and was connected to the circular system by a large vein leading into

the heart, and a large artery leading out. He could barely discern the sinus venosus, and conus

arteriosus, located the anterior and posterior sections of the heart respectively, but could observe very

little of either due the heart's small size, and could examine neither in depth. Following this, the

dissector examined the area anterior to the stomach and ventral to the swim bladder, finding the

bulbous, squishy, white stomach, which was largely overlapped by pairs of thin, white, tubular pyloric

saecae held together by a central disk of tissue, and whose vental anterior side attached to both the

small white gallbladder, and the larger, softer, white liver, both coattached to each other. The dissector

than analyzed the long, tubular, double folded white intestine, which protruded from the posterior of

the stomach, and eventually tapered off into the anus. From the exterior of one fold of the intestine, the

dissector could partially discern the pancreas, however it was to indistinct for him to fully examine,

and so he concluded analyzing the organs made visible through his window cut by noting the two pairs

of gray, long, white tipped gonads, which extended behind the stomach, and marked his perch as a

male. The dissector than moved to the perch's cerebrum, and using his scalpel, he made an incision into

the fiercely resistant bone, traveling from 1 mm behind the middle of the eye, to a point approximately

1-cm away, and repeating this process on the other side, before he connected the two cuts, and removed

the block of bone with little interference, revealing the perch's brain. At the brain's anterior most point,

behind the sinuses, the dissector observed two pairs of small olfactory bulbs, connected by nerves to—

Page 6: Fourth Quarter Biology Portfoliio

the thick cerebrum, which was anterior to the slightly smaller optic tectum, whose dorsal surface was

attached to the equally sized cerebellum, and whose ventral surface attached to the long, large, medulla

oblongata. Next, the dissector observed the thin, long, white spinal chord, which extended from the

base of the medulla oblongata toward the posterior of the perch, and turned his attention back to the

body. Using his forceps, the dissector removed a single scale from the perch's side, and carefully placed

it on a slide, for examination under a dissecting microscope. The dissector found that under a

microscope, the smooth scale appeared rough, extremely chunky, and thick, before he ended his

dissection, as he could locate nothing else to examine

Page 7: Fourth Quarter Biology Portfoliio

IV. Observations:

A. External Anatomy of a Perch

Page 8: Fourth Quarter Biology Portfoliio

IV. Observations:

B. Internal Anatomy of a Perch

Page 9: Fourth Quarter Biology Portfoliio

V. Conclusions:

1. Describe the teeth of fish and explain how their structure is adaptive to their diet.

The translucent teeth of a perch lie on its jaw, and their primary use consists of capturing

small organisms such as plankton. As an adaptation to their diet, the perch's teeth are small,

and, and posses extremely extremely sharp points, as well as a closely knit distribution

across the jaw, which aid in the ingestion of small organisms

2. Describe the location of the nostrils and explain where they lead

The pitted nostrils of a Perch are used to locate prey via scent, and are located immediately

anterior to the eyes, on the dorsal part of the perch's head. They lead a short way into the

perch's cranium and halt, whereupon nerve chords transfer sensory information to the

olfactory bulbs for processing.

3. Into what structure does the esophagus lead?

The short tube known as the esophagus transports food from the mouth, behind which it

begins, and the stomach, which it lead into.

4. Suggest a function of the spiny anterior dorsal fin.

The Anterior dorsal fin of a perch is composed of many sharp spines, connected by a thin

membrane, and aids the perch in remaining upright, and moving through the water in a

straight line.

5. List all the fins and describe their location on the fish. Which are paired? Which fins

contain spines? (answers in bold below)

The non-paired anterior dorsal fin, composed of spines, and the non-paired posterior

dorsal fin, composed of rays, lie on the dorsal surface of a perch. Behind both, at the total

posterior of the fish rests the non-paired, ray-composed caudal fin, and anterior to it on

the posterior ventral surface rests the non-paired anal fin, composed of both rays, and

spines. Anterior to the anal fin, lie the paired pelvic fins, composed of rays, and a few

spines, while finally, the paired pectoral fins project from either side of the fish, and are

composed of soft rays.

6. Describe the scales on your fish.

The scales on my fish had the appearance of small, smooth shiny shingles, all of which

pointed away from the anterior of the fish, in order to facilitate swimming. Under a

microscope, they were bumpy, and rough, and underneath them on the perch were located

small glands to excrete slime.

7. What takes place in the gills?

The gills are composed of four sets of gill arches with gill rakers branching to the interior.

To the exterior, many smaller gill filaments connect, to form that body of the gill, which in

turn contain small capillaries, through which blood travels during the process of gas

exchange, that takes place in the gills. The gills also aid in ion transfer, ammonia filtration,

and excretion.

8. What is the function of the gill filaments?

The gill filaments are a double row of thin projections that extend from the gill arches, and

serve to hold the capillaries. Inside them, most of the gill's primary functions occur.

9. Describe how circulation takes place in a fish..

Veins lead deoxygenated blood into a collecting chamber know as the sinus venosus, which

in turn deposits the blood into a large chamber of the heart known as the atrium.

Contractions of the atrium speeds up the blood, and drive it into the muscular ventricle, the

heart's main pumping chamber. Here, contractions of the ventricle provide most of the force

which drives blood throughout the entire circulatory system, and force blood into the elastic,

valved, conus arteriosus, from which it travels along arteries into the gills, and undergoes—

Page 10: Fourth Quarter Biology Portfoliio

gas exchange in small vessels called capillaries, before transporting oxygen and nutrients to

other parts of the body, and traveling back to the heart.

10. Summarize your dissection experience.

When I discovered that the class would carry out the dissection on separate days I became a

bit worried, because we hadn't been issued dissection guides, however my doubts were soon

assuaged, and I did fairly well, on the whole. At first I had a few problems identifying the

heart, however after that, everything fell into place. I even discovered some structures

(pyloric caeca), which were unlabeled in our book's original illustration, and found the

experience interesting (my perch only had three). Another large surprise came when I noted

that that that aside from the orange muscle, I could classify everything in almost “black and

white” terms, regarding coloration. Unlike the previous dissection, I made my slide

correctly, and I had no trouble locating my perch's brain in perfect condition. However the

most enjoyable part came just as I thought it completed, and walked through the door. After

being (voluntarily) press ganged by one of my instructor's delightful assosiates, I felt like

something of a scientific missionary to the lower grades, displaying a fish heart for all to

see. And though I still don't find dissection lovable in and of itself, I do know that I find

many of the connected accidentals extremely enjoyable.

Page 11: Fourth Quarter Biology Portfoliio

Christopher Long

The Frog

Kingdom: Animalia

Phylum: Chordata

Subphylum: Vertebrata

Class: Amphibia

Order: Anura

Genus: Rana

Species: pipiens

Page 12: Fourth Quarter Biology Portfoliio

I. Purpose:

The purpose is to examine the Frog internally and externally by dissection.

II. Materials:

1. Dissection tray

2. Frog

3. Scalpel

4. Scissors

5. Forceps

6. Dissecting Needle

7. Dissecting Probe

Page 13: Fourth Quarter Biology Portfoliio

III. Methods:

A. External:

The dissector began his dissection of the frog by observing the smooth, slimy skin, which hung loosely

from the body, colored yellow on the ventral surface, and splotchy green on the dorsal surface, where

the integument clung slightly tighter. He noted that the body of the frog consisted of a small head

section connected to a larger trunk section by a short neck, and that from the trunk extended four pairs

of legs, each of which held four fingers. The dissector then observed the two small, brown modified

lateral lines, that protruded lateral to the frog's depressed backbone, and halted shortly beneath the

frog's moderately sized black eyes, which were covered by three eyelids; the soft skinfold know as the

upper eyelid, the flexible lower eyelid, and the hardy, transparent, nictitating membrane, which he

probed using his dissection probe, and could not easily move. Lateral, and slightly ventral to the eyes,

the dissector observed the flat, indented tympanums, while medial to the tympanums, and cranial to the

eyes, he could see the small, white, pitted external nares, which he probed using his dissection probe,

discovering that they ran a short while into the head, but did not reach the brain. The dissector next

observed the frog's short, clawless forelimbs, located ventral and distal to the eyes, on the trunk of the

frog, before he examined the dorsally located, muscular hind legs, which were slightly longer than the

frogs body, and three times as long as the frogs forelimbs, possessing webbed feet, and unclawed toes,

one extremely large in relation to the others. The dissector then flipped the frog to it's ventral side, and

observed that he could see a portion of the large intestine through the skin, running medially from the

limbs to the black opening known as the vent, which he then lightly probed using his dissection needle,

and found to extend a moderate way into the frog. Next, the dissector then flipped his frog to the dorsal

side, and probe the tight, closed jaws with his dissection probe, which could not go very far because of

the jaws. Then the dissector held the frog, and using his gloved hand, broke the resistant jaws in half,

and split portions of the frogs neck located proximal to it. Lining the dorsal interior of the frog's

creamy mouth, the dissector saw many small, sharp, clear maxillary teeth, which were not present on

the lower jaw. Proximal, and ventral these, on either side of the mouth's ventral portion, the dissector

saw the small, impressed openings know as internal nares, which his probe could not go far into, while

medial to the internal nares, the dissector saw grey, flat, twin vomerine teeth. Ventral to the vomerine

teeth, between either side of the jaw, the dissector observed the shadowy esophagus, which he probed a

brief way into using his dissection needle, finding it to be short and leading to the stomach, located

medial to the larger openings of the Eustachian tubes, located on the dorsal surface of the jaw, which he

did not prob into. Medial and ventral to the Esophagus, on the jaw's ventral surface, dissector

observed a rounded structure he knew to be the glottis, which his dissection probe revealed to be the

opening of the larynx, but lateral to it, could not observe any vocal sac openings, proving conclusively

his frog was female. The dissector then observed that cranial to the glottis lay the frog's dark gray,

bulbous, flat, cranially attached tongue, which at the uttermost caudal point, split into two small

protrusions, and ended his external analysis.

B. Internal:

The dissector began his internal observations by flipping the frog to it's ventral side, removing most of

the skin from the frogs body with his scalpel, incising first down the middle, and then making two

lateral incisions proximal the legs on either side, to sever connection points, before pulling the rest of

the skin of the frog's body with moderate ease, and observed the smooth, flexible, yellowish orange

muscle beneath, which proved particularly numerous around the hind limbs. Next, the dissector—

Page 14: Fourth Quarter Biology Portfoliio

—made an incision with his scalpel down the center of the stomach, and four smaller incisions lateral

to this along the interior side of each limb. The dissector then tugged the two flaps created open, and

observed the internal organs of the frog. Many tubular, rubbery, orange fat bodies obscured the

dissectors view, so he removed them, and then proceeded. Toward the cranial end, the dissector

observed a large, forest green, moderately soft, three lobed liver, which partially obscured and

connected to the J-shaped, soft stomach, which was dirty orange in coloration, and ran laterally to it

along the frog's left side. Tucked underneath the middle lobe of the liver, the dissector observed the

green, soft gallbladder, which connected the middle lobe of the liver to caudal end of the stomach via a

thin bile duct. The dissector removed the liver, and observed the gray, muscular, bulbous heart which

rested cranial to it, consisting of the valentine-shaped ventricle, and the spherical left and right atriums,

located cranial and lateral to it. Distal and lateral to these, tucked along either side of the frog's body

cavity, the dissector observed two pairs of deflated, membraneous, purplish lungs, connected to the

lobes of the heart via a network of veins and arteries, while cranial to them, he observed the small

Esophagus, which connected to the stomach. The dissector removed both the lungs, and the heart,

revealing the white backbone of the frog, and more of the orange internal muscle he had observed

earlier. He followed the backbone caudally until he reach the thin, whitish yellow, dual-portioned,

coiled small intestine; which he observed to consist of a cranial end know as the duodenum, which

connected to the stomach, and a lower end known as the ileum, which ran caudally toward the small

intestine; and was covered by a small the thin, clear membrane of mesentery. Located on the right side

of the frog, and lateral to the lower portion of the small intestine; the dissector observed a small,

yellow-white, slightly bulbous, tightly coiled tube, which he recognized as the frog's oviduct; and

connected caudally to it, he saw the thick, straight, soft, white colored large intestine, that piped off

into the short, thin tube of the cloaca, and eventually ran into the vent, located at the caudal end of the

frog. Ventral to this, he saw the thin, deflated white membrane of the urinary bladder, which piped into

the cloaca, and running laterally and proximal from the large intestine along the left side of the frog,

the dissector saw the red, spherical, bulbous spleen; while located cranially, and slightly to the frog's

right, the dissector observed the two reddish kidneys, ventral to the frog's small intestine; and dorsally

cranial to this, the dissector saw small, white, brain-like pancreas, dorsal to the inestine. The dissector

then flipped his flog to it's dorsal side, and searched for the brain. Using his scalpel, the dissector made

an incision about 1 mm caudal from the right eye, and followed it over to the left, before he cut

caudally about 5 mm, and then over again, creating a disk in the skull of the frog, which he then

removed, revealing the brain. At the cranial end of the white, coiled brain, the dissector saw a pair of

olfactory bulbs, which led caudally into the larger cerebrum, located cranial to the optic tectum.

Caudal, and dorsal to the optic tectum, the dissector could observe the cerebellum, while caudal and

ventral to it, the dissector saw the elongated medulla oblongata, which tapered into the spinal chord.

The dissector noted a number of tiny nerves running out from the brain, and then ended his dissection,

as there was nothing else to examine.

Page 15: Fourth Quarter Biology Portfoliio

IV. Observations:

A. External Anatomy of a Frog:

Page 16: Fourth Quarter Biology Portfoliio

IV. Observations:

B. Internal Anatomy of a Frog:

Page 17: Fourth Quarter Biology Portfoliio

V. Conclusions:

1. Name two different functions of the skin

The loose, thin skin of a Frog contains many capillaries, and serves a vital aid in gas

exchange through the process of cutaneous respiration, due the small surface area of the

lungs. Because of its permeability, the skin of a frog also allows for the absorption of


2. Name a function of the mucus glands.

The mucus glands of a Frog excrete a lubricant that keeps the skin moist in air, and aids in

gas exchange. In some species, they also excrete foul tasting, or poisonous substances

3. How many arteries does a frog have?

The frog has three primary arteries, as well as many smaller arteries. The Carotid arches

transport blood to the brain, the Aortic Arches transport blood the the body, and the

Pulmocutaneous artery transports blood to the lungs. Other arteries include the renal

artery, the gastric artery, the hepatic artery, the subclavian artery, and the iliac artery.

4. What is an adaptive value of the nictitating membrane?

The transparent, movable nictitating membrane protects the eyes of a frog from chemical,

bacteriological, and biological agents, without impeding vision.

5. Name four structures that empty their discharge into the cloaca. (answers in bold below)

The large intestine, the gonads (ovaries and testes), the urinary bladder, and the kidneys

all discharge into the frog's cloaca.

6. Name two ways that a frog's forelimbs differ from it's hind legs.

The longer back legs of a frog posses a skeleton with several specializations for absorbing

the forces created by jumping and landing, and webbed hind feet.

7. How is the tongue of a frog attached to its mouth?

The muscular tongue of a frog is attached to the cranial end of the mouth so that the tongue

can be flipped out and used to snare prey.

8. Where does the opening of the Glotis lead?

The glotis is a small, rounded structure with a vertical slit, found just caudal to the tongue,

which serves as the opening to the larynx and the lungs

9. How many chambers are there in a frogs heart.

The tri-chambered heart of a frog consists of the left atrium, which contains only

oxygenated blood, the right atrium, which contains only deoxygenated blood, and the

muscular ventricle, which contains both oxygenated and deoxygenated blood, pumping

them throughout the circulatory system.

10. Name the three arteries that branch from the Truncus Arteriosus

The Carotid arches transport blood to the brain, the Aortic Arches transport blood the the

body, and the Pulmocutaneous artery transports blood to the lungs.

11. How many lobes make up the liver of a frog?

The large liver of a frog creates bile, and consists of three separate lobes; the right lobe, the

left anterior lobe, and the left posterior lobe.

12. Why is the Gallbladder Green?

The gallbladder serves as a storage area for bile, which tints it green.

13. What is the main function of mesentery?

The mesentery is a small, thin membrane resembling a pastic wrap, which holds the small

intestine in place.

14. What system does the kidney belong to? What is its main function?

The kidneys of a frog serve as it's primary excretory organs, filtering the blood of harmful

chemicals, and converting toxic ammonia into urea.

Page 18: Fourth Quarter Biology Portfoliio

15. Summarize your dissection experience in two paragraphs:

When I first walked into the dissection room, after three days of sickness with a virus, I

didn't expect that my instructor would have me participate in the dissection, despite the

rigorous study I'd been stocking up on. Needless to say, I was worried at first. Although I

knew that my lab report would be graded fairly, I didn't want to seem like the proverbial

dunce in the corner (though once the dissection began, this fear dissipated). With exception

of a few structures inside the mouth I needed no help whatsoever for my external

observations, and completed them with little hassle. Cracking open the frog's jaw was a

little difficult— at first—however the jovial laughter of a female classmate, in equally

difficult straights, deprived me of any shame. For some reason, even the preservatives smelt

less cloyingly (though a little got on my face), and I went on to my internal observations

with confidence and zing.

The internal observations of my dissection were considerably more eventful, as I realized

when I looked carefully at my tools. When the last class came through, someone dropped

two forceps into my tray, rather than any scissors. To me, this came as a healthy surprise;

from previous dissections, I'd come to prefer a scalpel. In any event, my dissection moved

along at a rapid pace (to rapid I realized, when a frog leg flew into my lap). Most of the

internal organs I found resembled those of a perch, and this familiarity, combined with a

more familiar tool, allowed me to go ahead of the current instructions. The only organs I

couldn't name at first sight were the kidneys and the pancreas, which my instructor

determined for me, before I found my frog's (intact) brain. By this point, the stench had

broken through my nostrils, so with some happiness, I cleaned out my tray, and found that

missing pair of scissors, before tottering out of the classroom. Despite the pride of having

completed a difficult dissection, my stomach rumbled. Sometimes, food is the last thing

anyone has in mind…

Page 19: Fourth Quarter Biology Portfoliio
Page 20: Fourth Quarter Biology Portfoliio

Christopher Long


Mr. Snyder

A.D. 2009

Heart Rate Lab:


In this lab I examine the affect of various actions on my heart rate:

Heart Rate: Walking Jogging Running

Beats per Fifteen Seconds 20 37 48

Beat per Minute 80 148 192

Beats per Fifteen Seconds

After One Minute16 23 30

Page 21: Fourth Quarter Biology Portfoliio

Christopher Long


Mr. Snyder

A.D. 2009

Blood Type Lab:


Around 1900, Karl Landsteiner discovered that there are at least four different kinds of human

blood, determined by the presence or absence of specific agglutinogens (antigens) on the surface of red

blood cells (erythrocytes). these antigens have been designated as A and B. Antibodies against antigens

A or B begin to build up in the blood plasma shortly after birth, the levels peak at about eight to ten

years of age, and the antibodies remain, in declining amounts, throughout the rest of a person's life. The

stimulus for antibody production is not clear; however, it has been proposed that antibody production is

initiated by minute amounts of A and B antigens that may enter the body through food, bacteria, or

other means. Humans normally produce antibodies against those antigens that are not on their

erythrocytes: A person with A antigens has anti-B antibodies; a person with B antigens has anti-A

antibodies; a person with neither A nor B antigens has both anti-A and anti-B antibodies; and a person

with both A and B antigens has neither anti-A nor anti-B antibodies (Figure 1). Blood type is based on

the antigens, not the antibodies, a person possesses. The four blood groups are types A, B, AB, and O.

Blood type O, characterized by the absence of A and B agglutinogens, is the most common in the

United States and is found in 45% of the population. Type A is next in frequency, and is found in 39%

of the population. The frequencies at which types B and AB occur are 12% and 4% respectively.

Figure I:

Blood Type: Agglutinogens: Antibodies in


Can Give Blood


Can Receive

Blood From:

A: A Anti-B A, AB O, A

B: B Anti-A B, AB O, B

AB: A and B Neither AB O, A, B, AB

O: Neither A nor B Both O, A, B, AB O

The ABO System and Process of Agglutination:

There is a simple test performed with antisera containing high levels of anti-A and anti-B

agglutinins to determine blood type. Several drops of each kind of antiserum are added to separate

samples of blood. If agglutination (clumping) occurs only in the suspension to which the anti-A serum

was added, the blood type is A. If agglutination occurs only in the anti-B mixture, the blood type is B.

Agglutination in both samples indicates that the blood type is AB. The absence of agglutination in any

sample indicates that the blood type is O (Figure 2)

Page 22: Fourth Quarter Biology Portfoliio

Figure II:


Anti-A Serum: Anti-B Serum:Blood Type:

Agglutination No Agglutination A

No Agglutination Agglutination B

Agglutination Agglutination AB

No Agglutination No Agglutination O

The Importance of Blood Typing:

As noted in the table above, people can receive transfusions of only certain blood types,

depending on the type of blood they have. If incompatible blood types are mixed, erythrocyte

destruction, agglutination and other problems can occur. For instance, if a person with type B blood is

transfused with blood type A, the recipient’s anti-A antibodies will attack the incoming type A

erythrocytes. The type A erythrocytes will be agglutinated, and hemoglobin will be released into the

plasma. In addition, incoming anti-B antibodies of the type A blood may also attack the type B

erythrocytes of the recipient, with similar results. This problem may not be serious, unless a large

amount of blood is transfused.

The ABO blood groups and other inherited antigen characteristics of red blood cells are often used in

medico-legal situations involving identification of disputed paternity. A comparison of the blood

groups of mother, child, and alleged father may exclude the man as a possible parent. Blood typing

cannot prove that an individual is the father of a child; it merely indicates whether or not he possibly

could be. For example, a child with a blood type of AB, whose mother is type A, could not have a man

whose blood type is O as a father.

The Genetics of Blood Types:

The human blood types (A, B, AB, and O) are inherited by multiple alleles, which occurs when

three or more genes occupy a single locus on a chromosome. Gene IA codes for the synthesis of antigen

(agglutinogen) A, gene IB codes for the production of antigen B on the red blood cells, and gene i does

not produce any antigens. The phenotypes listed in the table below are produced by the combinations

of the three different alleles: IA, I

B, and i. When genes I

B and I

A are present in an individual, both are

fully expressed. Both IA and I

B are dominant over i so the genotype of an individual with blood type O

must be ii (Figure 3).

Page 23: Fourth Quarter Biology Portfoliio

Figure III:

Phenotype Possible Genotypes




O ii

Use IA for antigen A, IB for antigen B, and i for no antigens present. Genes IA and IA are dominant over i. AB blood type

results when both genes IA and IB are present.

The RH System:

In the period between 1900 and 1940, a great deal of research was done to discover the presence

of other antigens in human red blood cells. In 1940, Landsteiner and Wiener reported that rabbit sera

containing antibodies for the red blood cells of the Rhesus monkey would agglutinate the red blood

cells of 5% of Caucasians. These antigens, six in all, were designated as the Rh (Rhesus) factor, and

they were given the letters C, c, D, d, E, and e by Fischer and Race. Of these six antigens, the D factor

is found in 85% of Caucasians, 94% of African Americans, and 99% of Asians. An individual who

possesses these antigens is designated Rh+; an individual who lacks them is designated Rh-.

The genetics of the Rh blood group system is complicated by the fact that more than one antigen can be

identified by the presence of a given Rh gene. Initially, the Rh phenotype was thought to be determined

by a single pair of alleles. However, there are at least eight alleles for the Rh factor. To simplify

matters, consider one allele: Rh+ is dominant over Rh-; therefore, a person with an Rh+/Rh- or

Rh+/Rh+ genotype has Rh+ blood.

The anti-Rh antibodies of the system are not normally present in the plasma, but anti-Rh antibodies can

be produced upon exposure and sensitization to Rh antigens. Sensitization can occur when Rh+ blood

is transfused into an Rh- recipient, or when an Rh- mother carries a fetus who is Rh+. In the latter case,

some of the fetal Rh antigens may enter the mother’s circulation and sensitize her so that she begins to

produce anti-Rh antibodies against the fetal antigens. In most cases, sensitization to the Rh antigens

takes place toward the end of pregnancy, but because it takes some time to build up the anti-Rh

antibodies, the first Rh+ child carried by a previously unsensitized mother is usually unaffected.

However, if an Rh- mother, or a mother previously sensitized by a blood transfusion or a previous Rh+

pregnancy, carries an Rh+ fetus, maternal anti-Rh antibodies may enter the fetus’ circulation, causing

the agglutination and hemolysis of fetal erythrocytes and resulting in a condition known as

erythroblastosis fetalis (hemolytic disease of the newborn). To treat an infant in a severe case, the

infant’s Rh+ blood is removed and replaced with Rh- blood from an unsensitized donor to reduce the

level of anti-Rh antibodies.

Page 24: Fourth Quarter Biology Portfoliio


! Define Agglutination and agglutinin

! Perform an actual blood typing procedure

! Observe the antigen/antibody reaction in blood

! Determine the ABO and Rh blood type of your own blood

! analyze class data to determine if it is representative of the human population

Materials:Material Needed per Group:

! Two sterile alcohol pads

! One sterile lancet

! One Blood typing tray

! Three toothpicks

! Gloves

! Goggles

! Apron

Shared Materials:

! Anti-A typing serum

! Anti-B typing serum

! Anti-Rh typing serum

! Biohazard bag


! Protective gloves, goggles, and face shield should be worn when handling blood samples or

when in contact wit contaminated materials.

! Dispose of all contaminated items in the included biohazard bag and placed in a properly

labeled biomedical waste container.

ABO and Rh Blood Typing:

1. Thoroughly clean the tip of one finger on your non-writing hand with a sterile alcohol pad.

2. Carefully open a sterile lancet package from the end that is closest to the blunt end of the lancet

and remove it.

3. Prick the sterile area on your finger with the lancet.

4. Carefully place the lancet back in its package and dispose of it in the biohazard bag.

! If you cannot perform this step, as your teacher for assistance

5. Add one drop of blood to each well of the blood typing tray

Page 25: Fourth Quarter Biology Portfoliio

6. Clean the tip of your finger with another sterile alcohol pad and dispose of it in the biohazard


7. Add one drop of anti-A serum to the A well of your blood typing tray, one drop of anti-B serum

to the B well, and one drop of anti-Rh serum to the Rh well.

8. Using a clean toothpick, stir the A well thoroughly. Dispose of the toothpick in the biohazard


9. Repeat the above step for each of the B and Rh wells. Be sure to use a new toothpick for each

well to avoid cross-contamination. Dispose of each toothpick in the biohazard bag when you are

done stirring each well.

10. Examine each well for agglutination. Agglutination indicates a positive text result.

! Clumping in a tray may indicate agglutination

11. Record your results in Table One in the Analysis section and determine your blood type.

12. Pool the class data and calculate the percentage of students with each blood type using the

following formula:

! (Total number of students with type X blood/Total number of students in the class)*100

13. Record your results in Table Two


Table I:

Anti-A Serum Anti-B Serum Anti-Rh Serum Blood Type

Blood Sample A Anti-B A, AB O, A

Table II:

Blood Type # of Students With

Blood Type

Total # of Students in











% of Students with

Blood Type





Page 26: Fourth Quarter Biology Portfoliio


1. Answer the following questions based on your ABO blood type. Ignore the Rh factor for this


a) What agglutinins are found in your plasma?

! Anti-A and Anti-B antibodies

b) What agglutinins are found in your plasma?

! None whatsoever

c) If you needed a blood transfusion, what blood types could you safely receive?

! O

d) If you donated blood, what blood type(s) could safely be transfused with your blood?

! AB, B, A, O

2. Below is a description representing the blood type analysis of a new patient (Patient X). From

the information obtained from the “slide”, fill out the medical technologist's report.

a) Blood Typing Tray

! A Well: Agglutination

! B Well: No Agglutination

! RH Well: Agglutination

b) Medical Technologist's Report

! Patient Name: Christoph Lang

! ABO Type: A

! Rh type: +

! Med Tech Name: Herr Snyder's Klasse

Page 27: Fourth Quarter Biology Portfoliio

Christopher Long


Mr. Snyder

A.D. 2009

Nutrients Lab:


This lab depicts a diet containing all essential nutrients for human life:

Meal: Contents of Meal: Nutrients:

Breakfast Peaches soaked in Cream Carbohydrates, Water

Lunch Potato Soup and Red Wine Proteins, Lipids, Water

DinnerShrimp, Scallop, Lobster, Crab, Clam,

Caesar Salad, and German BeerMinerals, Vitamins, Water

Dessert Scones with Tea Vitamins, Water

Page 28: Fourth Quarter Biology Portfoliio

Christopher Long Biology I Mr. Snyder A.D. 2009

Fir! Year Biology:Many different approaches cover the difficult subject of first year biology, and none perhaps

grants the student a complete understanding of either biology, or the scientific methods employed in

this field. Yet despite the disparity of methods, and necessary lack of complete understanding, any

genuine course of biology must confront several of the notions most fundamental to the human

understanding of life. Firstly, the aspiring biologist must confront the building blocks of life, and

understand them to a degree sufficient for an understanding of more complex organisms. Second, he

must develop an understanding of life's immense range, and diversity. Finally, he must examine the

pinnacle of life, and explore the human body, created in millennia of evolution's blast furnace. In this

essay, I will explore how the development of my first first year biology course traced these steps.

Nothing holds a more perennial glee for young children then asking “Why ?”, and a whole field

of biology serves to answer the age old question of both why, and how, life functions. Because at it's

most fundamental level, life is composed of cells, my class gained a good initial understanding of

concepts relating to cellular biology. We learnt the the mechanics which underly life's transmission, —

The genetic code— and also explored the various chemical processes which allow cells to function, and

the organelles behind them; we learned of transcription and translation, ribosomes and nuclei. It was

this analysis of life's most basic structure and function which permitted the class to flourish later in the

course. When we learnt of cellular components such as DNA, it provided us a vital insight into

concepts we had not yet learned, such as the evolutionary diversity of life. Similarly, experiments

Page 29: Fourth Quarter Biology Portfoliio

performed to increase our knowledge of biology's most basic elements proved useful in the future,

providing us with firm examples of the scientific method. Thus, the work we did relating to cellular

biology and genetics put us in an excellent position to deal with more complex organisms, and natural

processes. It formed a sturdy backbone for the course.

When most people imagine life , they imagine the mammals— and entirely dismiss almost

every organism on the planet. In reality, the diversity of life on earth is so great that one critical element

of biology is simply to recognize it's depth. The processes which enable this vast diversity of life; the

methods of cellular formation, reproduction, organ growth to name a few, comprise the functional core

of biological understanding. For our class, confronting this broad concept engendered the most

intensive part of the year. We learnt the basic system of biological nomenclature, from kingdom to

species, studied the way in which individual animals adapt to their environment , and examined the

mammals, earth's most complex organism's. Moreover, we learned what had created the diversity we

saw, becoming familiar with the concept of Darwinian Evolution and many of it's corollaries, such as

natural selection. Nor did study alone did not constitute our duty: the class completed myriad

dissections, upon animals of ever increasing complexity, noting the simple intricacy of nature, and the

many intriguing similarities every specimen held in common. The more we studied, the more complete

our picture of the natural world became, and the closer we came to the level of excellence where we

could examine man, as the culmination of our biological studies. Understanding the vastness of life

enabled us to better understand our own uniqueness both as organism's formed through years of

development, and as human beings.

On earth, a single predator stands at the pinnacle; Man. No other organism has the capacity not

only to hunt any species at will, but also to surpass the very principles of nature herself, and moreover,

the human body provides biologists with the most extraordinary example of complexity in their grasp.

Page 30: Fourth Quarter Biology Portfoliio

With this spirit, my class dove into our exploration of the human person. We examined the basic

composition of the human body, and carefully studied each system. We learnt about the tissues which

composed the systems. We learnt about the nutrients which sustained the tissues: we used all the

knowledge we gained from previous exercises, and at last, we saw how everything we'd learned up till

now worked in concert, and marveled at the symphony. Concepts before purely hypothetical, such as

genetics, and lab experiments of only technical note began to actually influence our lives, just as

modern biology has influenced life behind the scenes. Once, we first discovered the genes which

affected human blood type, and then married genes with practical science in an experiment which let us

find our blood type; information essential for transfusions. In the unlikely case that a friend is seriously

injured, knowing the primary veins and arteries could help save a life. Because the class learnt how

bones grow, we have a better idea of how to let them heal. And on a human level, knowing more about

ourselves, and our place in a hierarchy much wider than even our entire species led to a greater

understanding of the individual's place in human society. Studying Man was a perfect end for the

course, and it allowed for both an overview, and a learning experience.

In my first year Biology course, I learnt many things. I learnt about the human body, about

tissues and ligaments; about the immensity of life, how evolution helped create it; and about life's basic

unit of structure and function, the cell. Along the way, sometimes the class laughed, and other times we

suffered, (The blood type lab was painful) however the course fully met our expectations. Not only did

it give us a firm biological foundation; it also helped us to understand our place in the cosmos.