Question

Are there differences in the DNA in different types of human body cells? Explain.

Solution

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All cells of the human organism contain the same genome. However, they differ and have various functions. This is enabled by cell differentiation. Cell differentiation is the process in which specialized cells are formed from totipotent cells. Totipotent cells are present in the zygote and they can develop into any type of cells. They can even differentiate to extra-embryonic membranes and placenta.

Embryonic stem cells are pluripotent, which means that they can develop into any cell type in the body.  However, adult stem cells are multipotent, which means that they can differentiate into several types of specialized cells.

Multicellular organisms have the need for cell specialization because it would be impossible that all the genes are expressed in all of the different cells.

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