Portions of the glossary text were taken directly or modified from definitions in the U.S. Congress Office of Technology Assessment document: Mapping Our Genes The Genome Projects: How Big, How Fast? OTA-BA-373, Washington, D.C.: U.S. Government Printing Office, April 1988.
Adenine (A): A nitrogenous base, one member
of the base pair A-T (adenine-thymine).
Bacteriophage: See phage.
cDNA: See complementary DNA.
Deoxyribonucleotide: See nucleotide.
E. coli: Common bacterium that has been studied
intensively by geneticists because of its small genome size, normal lack
of pathogenicity, and ease of growth in the laboratory.
FISH (fluorescence in
situ hybridization): A physical mapping approach that uses
fluorescein tags to detect hybridization of probes with
metaphase chromosomes and with the less-condensed somatic interphase
Gamete: Mature male or female reproductive cell
(sperm or ovum) with a haploid set of chromosomes (23 for
Haploid: A single set of chromosomes
(half the full set of genetic material), present in the egg and sperm
cells of animals and in the egg and pollen cells of plants. Human beings
have 23 chromosomes in their reproductive cells. Compare diploid.
Informatics: The study of the application
of computer and statistical techniques to the management of information.
In genome projects, informatics includes the development of methods
to search databases quickly, to analyze DNA sequence information, and
to predict protein sequence and structure from DNA sequence data.
Karyotype: A photomicrograph of an individuals
chromosomes arranged in a standard format showing the number, size,
and shape of each chromosome type; used in low-resolution physical
mapping to correlate gross chromosomal abnormalities with the characteristics
of specific diseases.
Library: An unordered collection of clones
(i.e., cloned DNA from a particular organism), whose relationship to each
other can be established by physical mapping. Compare genomic
library, arrayed library.
Macrorestriction map: Map depicting
the order of and distance between sites at which restriction enzymes
Nitrogenous base: A nitrogen-containing
molecule having the chemical properties of a base.
Oncogene: A gene, one or more forms of which is associated
with cancer. Many oncogenes are involved, directly or indirectly, in controlling
the rate of cell growth.
PCR: See polymerase_chain reaction.
Rare-cutter enzyme: See restriction
enzyme cutting site.
Sequence: See base sequence.
Tandem repeat sequences: Multiple
copies of the same base sequence on a chromosome; used as
a marker in physical mapping.
Vector: See cloning vector.
YAC: See yeast artificial chromosome.
*Denotes U.S. Department of Energy organizations.
+Denotes U.S. Department of Health and Human Services organizations.
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