Today’s Wonder of the Day was inspired by Andrea. Andrea Wonders, “what is molecular biology” Thanks for WONDERing with us, Andrea!

Do you like to think about the future? Today, it often seems like the sky’s the limit when it comes to what people can do. Flying cars? Sure! Self-driving cars? Why not? A human colony on Mars? Sign us up!

Take time to look carefully at the world around you. You may see that, in many ways, the future is already here. Scientists have cloned a sheep. They’ve also made genetically modified organisms (GMOs) that lead to greater crop yields than ever before. Both of these examples share a common thread—genes and DNA. That means molecular biologists helped pave the way to these breakthroughs.

Have you ever taken a biology class? If so, you know that biologists study life. Life is a big subject, though. There are many different types and parts of life that people can learn about.

As their name clearly states, molecular biologists study life on a molecular level. They explore inside the cells that make up living things. This helps them learn how organelles, DNA, RNA, proteins, etc., work to give living things their traits.

Today, many of these scientists focus on genes. They research DNA to better understand genetic information. Many seek to understand how genes can cause diseases. They also look for ways changing DNA can improve characteristics of species.

Molecular biologists can find work in many forms. They may become teachers, researchers, scientific advisers, and technicians. They could work for private corporations, universities and colleges, or even government agencies.

Most molecular biologists will do a lot of their work in research labs. However, the exact kind of work they do can vary widely. Many work to cure diseases. Others may try to improve farming. Some even try to reduce pollution in the environment.

Are you interested in following this career path? You can start now. Work hard in all of your classes, especially science and math. Most people in this field also earn a Bachelor of Science degree in college. Think about studying a life science—most schools offer many options!

This career can be very challenging. But many who choose it say the work they do is exciting. For anyone interested in learning more about living things, the hard work may be worth it!

Standards: NGSS.LS1.A, CCRA.L.3, CCRA.L.6, CCRA.R.1, CCRA.R.2, CCRA.R.4, CCRA.R.10, CCRA.SL.1

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Tomorrow’s Wonder of the Day might not QUACK you up, but we think it’ll be fun anyway!