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

  • n. A gene that causes the transformation of normal cells into cancerous tumor cells, especially a viral gene that transforms a host cell into a tumor cell.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. Any gene that contributes to the conversion of a normal cell into a cancerous cell when mutated or expressed at high levels.

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

  • n. a gene that disposes normal cells to change into cancerous tumor cells


Greek onkos, mass, tumor; see oncology + gene.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From onco- +‎ gene. (Wiktionary)



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