Gregor Mendel was a scientist who was born in Austria on July 1822. He was an Austrian monk who belonged to friar of Augustinian and was brought up in a German speaking family. Gregor got recognition as the founder of modern science especially on genetics when he founded the basic principles behind genetics on his garden. In 1856 and 1863, Mendel conducted experiments in his garden on pea plants and established laws such as the Mendelian inheritance. At that time, it was known for many years by farmers that animal and plant cross breeding had certain benefits on traits that one desired. In his monastery garden, his experiments revealed that some traits in pea plants he was working on followed some patterns and since then his experiments have become the foundation of today’s genetics. Accordingly this paper seeks to describe Gregor Mendel and his contribution to modern science of heredity.
Born in Austria on July 1822 as Johann Mendel, he spend his youth in a rural environment until at the age of 11 years old, when he impressed a local school master by his ability of learning. Mendel was recommended for learning in a secondary school to continue with his education. This was a very difficult experience for Mendel because moving to a secondary school was hard for his family because of finances but he excelled and eventually graduated with honors from the school in the year 1840. After his graduation, he joined philosophical institute and did well academically especially in the areas of math and physics and even becoming a tutor in his free time so that he could make a living. He temporarily abandoned his studies after suffering episodes of depression but finally completed the program.
Johann Mendel started learning to be a monk and this was against his father’s wish to take over the farm of his family. He joined the Augustinian friar at the monastery of St. Thomas where he was given the name Gregor as his name. This monastery was a religious center at that time and Gregor was right away exposed to its teachings and research. The monastery had library and experimental provisions that Gregor used. He became sick when he was working in the community and he was sent to take a teaching position temporarily but failed in certification exams. He was later sent to complete his studies in science at the University of Vienna and later returned to the monastery and was offered a position of teaching at a secondary school. Gregor taught in this secondary school for many decades and started his experiments which until today he is best known for.
According to Gregor Mendel, “My scientific studies have afforded me great gratification; and I am convinced that it will not be long before the whole world acknowledges the results of my work.” Gregor started researching in plant hybrids and specifically how hereditary traits were transmitted. He selected pea plants for conducting his research because there were many different varieties which produced easily and fast. The pea plants that had different characteristics were cross fertilized and some of the traits that pea plants inherited independently were plant height, seed shape, pod shape, and flower color. Gregor carried out his experiments and established two important conclusions which were the law of segregation, and the law of independent assortment. The Law of segregation established that there were some traits which were dominant and were transmitted randomly from parents to offspring. On the other hand the law of assortment established that transmission of traits of other traits from parent to offspring was independent.
In conclusion, Gregor Mendel was a scientist and is considered the pioneer of genetics in modern science. He got recognition as the founder of modern science especially on genetics when he founded the basic principles behind genetics on a monastery garden. Mendel conducted experiments in his garden on pea plants and established laws such as the Mendelian inheritance. He established two important conclusions which were the law of segregation, and the law of independent assortment. The Law of segregation established that there were some traits which were dominant and were transmitted randomly from parents to offspring. The law of assortment established that transmission of traits of other traits from parent to offspring was independent.
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