Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. A threadlike linear strand of DNA and associated proteins in the nucleus of eukaryotic cells that carries the genes and functions in the transmission of hereditary information.
  • n. A circular strand of DNA in bacteria that contains the hereditary information necessary for cell life.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A structure in the cell nucleus that contains DNA, histone protein, and other structural proteins.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. One of the minute bodies into which the chromatin of the nucleus is resolved during mitotic cell division; the idant of Weismann.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. In cytology, one of the definite segments or pieces of chromatin of the cell-nucleus.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. a threadlike strand of DNA in the cell nucleus that carries the genes in a linear order

Etymologies

19th century: from German Chromosom, ultimately from Ancient Greek χρῶμα (khroma, "colour") + σῶμα ("body") (because they are stained under the microscope). (Wiktionary)

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