DNA – deoxyribonucleic acid – definition and function

Deoxyribonucleic Acid Definition DNA – the abbreviation for deoxyribonucleic acid. DNA is the molecule of heredity; its sequences form the body’s GENETIC CODE. Each cell in the body contains DNA within the chromosomes in its nucleus (except erythrocytes, which do not have nuclei). DNA has a characteristic double-helix structure that resembles a gently twisting ladder. The supporting […]

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Variation (genetic) – definition

Variation Definition The genetic differences among individuals. There are trillions of possible GENE combinations within the human GENOME. Except for identical twins, no two people share exactly the same GENOTYPE (genetic constitution). Though any two individuals may have 99.9 percent of the same DNA sequences and gene pairings, the 0.1 percent of pairings that differ accounts for the endless details that make each […]

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Gamete – definition

Gamete Definition Gamete is a spermatozoon (SPERM cell) or an ovum (egg cell). A gamete, also called a germ cell or sex cell, is a haploid cell; it contains half the complement of chromosomes and genetic material necessary to encode (result in creating) an individual. When two gametes merge they produce a single diploid cell, the ZYGOTE, […]

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Zygote – (genetic) definition

Zygote Definition The fertilized ovum (egg) before it begins to divide. The spermatozoon (SPERM cell) and the ovum are each haploid cells (gametes); they contain half the complement of chromosomes necessary to create an organism. When two gametes join they form a single diploid cell that contains the full complement of chromosomes. The zygote then divides as […]

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Gene – what is, definition and function

Gene Definition A segment of coding DNA (DNA that instructs the structure and function of cells throughout the body) composed of a specific sequence of nucleotides. The gene is the basic unit of inheritance that directs every facet of the body’s appearance and functions. Genes align along chromosomes in pairs. Each CHROMOSOME (AUTOSOME) contains thousands of genes, except the sex […]

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