Birgid Schlindwein's

Hypermedia Glossary Of Genetic Terms

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Chromosome The term was proposed by Waldeyer (1888) for the individual threads within a cell nucleus (gk. chroma, colour; soma, body). The self-replicating genetic structures of cells containing the cellular DNA that bears in its nucleotide sequence the linear array of genes. In prokaryotes, chromosomal DNA is circular, and the entire genome is carried on one chromosome. Eukaryotic genomes consist of a number of chromosomes whose DNA is associated with different kinds of proteins.
Related Terms:
Nucleus The term introduced by Brown (1833) for the more or less spherical structure which occures in cells and stains deeply with basic dyes. The cellular organelle in eukaryotes that contains the genetic material.
Nucleotide A subunit of DNA or RNA consisting of a nitrogenous base (purine in adenine and guanine, pyrimidine in thymine, or cytosine for DNA and uracil cytosine for RNA), a phosphate molecule, and a sugar molecule (deoxyribose in DNA and ribose in RNA). Depending on the sugar the nucleotides are called deoxyribonucleotides or ribonucleotides. Thousands of nucleotides are linked to form a DNA or RNA molecule. See also base pair.
Gene The term coined by Johannsen (1909) for the fundamental physical and functional unit of heredity. The word gene was derived from De Vries' term pangen, itself a derivative of the word pangenesis which Darwin (1868) had coined. A gene is an ordered sequence of nucleotides located in a particular position (locus) on a particular chromosome that encodes a specific functional product (the gene product, i.e. a protein or RNA molecule). It includes regions involved in regulation of expression and regions that code for a specific functional product. See gene expression, allele.
Prokaryote Cell or organism lacking a membrane-bound, structurally discrete nucleus and other subcellular compartments. Bacteria are prokaryotes. Compare eukaryote. See chromosomes.
Eukaryote Cell or organism with membrane-bound, structurally discrete nucleus and other well-developed subcellular compartments. Eukaryotes include all organisms except viruses, bacteria, and blue-green algae. Compare prokaryote. See chromosomes.
Protein A large molecule composed of one or more chains of amino acids in a specific order; the order is determined by the base sequence of nucleotides in the gene coding for the protein. Proteins are required for the structure, function, and regulation of the bodys cells, tissues, and organs, and each protein has unique functions. Examples are hormones, enzymes, and antibodies.

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Programming: Herbert Maier
Database: Birgid Schlindwein. Please contact me if you encounter any mistakes or if you are missing anything
© Dr. Birgid B. Schlindwein
last update of the database 10/01/2006