Definition of allele
allelicplay \-ˈlē-lik, -ˈle-\ adjective
allelismplay \-ˈlē-ˌli-zəm, -ˈle-\ noun
Recent Examples of allele from the Web
That means the companies must translate the demanding argot of genetics — alleles and phenotypes and centromeres — into something approachable, even simple, for physicians and laypersons alike.
These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'allele'. Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.
Origin and Etymology of allele
German Allel, short for Allelomorph
First Known Use: 1921See Words from the same year
Medical Definition of allele
1: any of the alternative forms of a gene that may occur at a given locus
2: either of a pair of alternative Mendelian characters (as ability versus inability to taste the chemical phenylthiocarbamide)
Learn More about allele
Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about allele
Seen and Heard
What made you want to look up allele? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).