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Genetic makeup of an organism. The genotype determines the hereditary potentials and limitations of an individual. Among organisms that reproduce sexually, an individual's genotype comprises the entire complex of genes inherited from both parents. Sexual reproduction guarantees that each individual has a unique genotype, except for identical twins, who come from the same fertilized egg. See alsophenotype, variation.
This entry comes from Encyclopædia Britannica Concise. For the full entry on genotype, visit Britannica.com.