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Question Video: Describing the Development of an Embryo If a Y Chromosome Is Present Biology

If an embryo has a Y chromosome, what will start to happen around 7 weeks into pregnancy?

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Video Transcript

If an embryo has a Y chromosome, what will start to happen around seven weeks into pregnancy? (A) Nervous signals will be generated to stimulate the development of female secondary sexual characteristics. (B) The embryo will divide rapidly into a large mass of cells. (C) The embryo will implant into the uterus wall. (D) Hormones will be released to initiate the formation of the male reproductive organs.

This question asks us about the contribution of the Y chromosome to the development of the embryo during pregnancy. The Y chromosome is involved in the development of males who have one copy of the X chromosome and Y chromosome, while biological females have two copies of the X chromosome.

Both male and female embryos develop in a similar way during the first six to seven weeks following fertilization. Then, the Y chromosome in the embryo will begin to influence further development. The Y chromosome contains the SRY gene, also referred to as the male-determining gene. This gene will help release certain hormones that are responsible for the development of male reproductive organs.

Therefore, the correct answer choice is (D). Hormones will be released to initiate the formation of the male reproductive organs.

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