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Related to homeotic gene: Homeotic mutation
Any of various genes that determine the type or location of a body part during an organism's development, especially in the early embryonic development of vertebrates.
The American Heritage® Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2007, 2004 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
homeotic geneone of a group of genes involved in DEVELOPMENT and DIFFERENTIATION, controlling the formation of whole organisms or body parts in animals and plants. Homeotic genes contain the homeobox, which encodes a PROTEIN DOMAIN that is capable of binding to DNA. Each homeotic gene regulates EXPRESSION of a set of other genes that direct development of a body part, such as an insect wing, antenna, leg. A TRANSCRIPTION factor, specified by the homeotic gene, binds to the PROMOTER of the set of genes that encodes the specific structure.
Many organisms have similar sets of homeotic genes. Dysfunction of these genes can result in developmental abnormalities.
Collins Dictionary of Biology, 3rd ed. © W. G. Hale, V. A. Saunders, J. P. Margham 2005