breakage-fusion-bridge cycle

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A cycle that begins with a dicentric chromosome forming a bridge as it is pulled toward both poles at once during anaphase. Such dicentric chromosomes may arise from an exchange within a paracentric inversion or may be radiation-induced. Once the dicentric breaks, the broken ends remain sticky, and these fuse subsequent to duplication. The result is another dicentric that breaks at anaphase, and so the cycle continues, with the chromosomes being broken anew at every mitosis . Since each subsequent break is likely to be at a different place than the previous ones, there will be a repeated regrouping of the genetic loci to produce duplications and deficiencies. See Chronology, 1938, McClintock; chromosome bridge, telomere.

Breakage-fusion-bridge cycle

Subjects: Genetics and Genomics.

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