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Mitochondrial DNA

Started by Lillycache, August 29, 2012, 11:19:41 am

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Lillycache

What is it?  It's the very smallest chain of DNA located with the organelle of a cell called the Mitochondria. The Mitochondria is responsible for turning food and oxygen into energy.  It's the engine so to speak.  The reason I brought this up is because this tiny piece of our humanness is inherited SOLELY from the mother. 

So I got to thinking about my own MDNA.  I have a picture on my desk of the 4 generations of women that proceded me.  My Great- Great Grandmother Carolina who immigrated from Germany in the 1880's with her husband and children.   Her youngest child my Great Grandmother Anna, a newborn at the time,  was smuggled aboard the ship in a hatbox.   Anna went on to marry and have five children.  Her oldest girl was my Grandmother Lydia.  Lydia born in 1905.  She lived through the roaring 20's was a flapper.  I have a picture of her in her 1920's style dresses and hats.  She never went highschool.  She went to work in a book bindry at the age of 14.  She married and had my mom in 1924.  Divorced my moms dad in 1935 and remarried in 1939.  Pretty unheard of in that day.  She worked as a bindry girl until she retired.  As I looked at her for the final time... her 3 fingers, index, middle and ring... were bent sideways at the first knuckle from 50 years of pushing books through the binder.    My mom was an only child.  Her baby brother died at 3 months of age.  She graduated from the same Highschool I eventually went to.  Worked at the telephone company until she married my dad in 1947 and I was born in 1949.

That's the lineage boiled down in a nutshell.  I have no knowlege of the women that proceeded Carolina. That history was never passed along to me.   But what gives me pause is that there will be no more of us.   My Mitochondrial DNA will cease to exist when my sons pass away.  I passed it along to them, but they did not pass it to their children as it comes only from ones mother.  Since I never had a daughter, my sons are the end of my lineage as far as this tiny piece goes.  It never seemed important before, but somehow now it saddens me. Maybe this microscopic genome is why there is a special bond with ones children.  A bond that fathers may come close to but never seem to duplicate.