Glossary Terms: E - H

Terms

  1. FOXP2

  2. Gene

  3. Genetic Marker

  4. GenoChip

  5. Genome

  6. Haplogroup

  7. Haplotype

  8. Heredity

Definitions

  1. FOXP2

    The first gene to be linked to language production, and one of the keys to the development of brain regions associated with speech. The development of language may be tied to a genetic mutation inFOXP2 that is shared by humans and our cousins, the Neanderthals, implying that it could have occurred more than 500,000 years ago before the ancestors of the Neanderthals migrated out of Africa.

  2. Gene

    Segment of DNA that is the basic functional unit of heredity. Genes are determined by an ordered sequence of chemical bases found in a unique position on a specific chromosome. Their “blueprint” guides protein production, which determines how different cells in the body function. Inherited genes also control an animal’s unique set of physical traits.

  3. Genetic Marker

    Random mutations in the DNA sequence which act as genetic milestones. Once markers have been identified they can be traced back in time to their origin—the most recent common ancestor of everyone who carries the marker.

  4. GenoChip

    A custom-designed genotyping array composed of nearly 150,000 microscopic beads, each of which tests for a different genetic marker on the autosomes, Y-chromosome, and mtDNA

  5. Genome

    The total DNA sequence that serves as an instruction manual for all proteins created in your body. Two copies of the genome are found inside each of our cells.

  6. Haplogroup

    Branches on the trees of early human migrations and genetic evolution, haplogroups often have a geographic relation. Haplogroups are defined by genetic mutations or “markers” found in Y-chromosome and mtDNA testing. These markers link the members of a haplogroup back to the marker’s first appearance in the group’s common ancestor.

  7. Haplotype

    A person’s individual footprint of all tested genetic markers. Even the difference of a single genetic marker delineates a distinct haplotype.

  8. Heredity

    The total sum of genetic information that humans pass on from generation to generation

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