Locus (genetics)

Location of a gene or region on a chromosome / From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

In genetics, a locus (plural loci) is a specific, fixed position on a chromosome where a particular gene or genetic marker is located.[1] Each chromosome carries many genes, with each gene occupying a different position or locus; in humans, the total number of protein-coding genes in a complete haploid set of 23 chromosomes is estimated at 19,000–20,000.[2]

Parts of a typical chromosome:

(1) Chromatid
(2) Centromere
(3) Short (p) arm
(4) Long (q) arm

Genes may possess multiple variants known as alleles, and an allele may also be said to reside at a particular locus. Diploid and polyploid cells whose chromosomes have the same allele at a given locus are called homozygous with respect to that locus, while those that have different alleles at a given locus are called heterozygous.[3] The ordered list of loci known for a particular genome is called a gene map. Gene mapping is the process of determining the specific locus or loci responsible for producing a particular phenotype or biological trait. Association mapping, also known as "linkage disequilibrium mapping", is a method of mapping quantitative trait loci (QTLs) that takes advantage of historic linkage disequilibrium to link phenotypes (observable characteristics) to genotypes (the genetic constitution of organisms), uncovering genetic associations.