genetic load

noun

: the decrease in fitness of the average individual in a population relative to the fittest genotype due to the presence of deleterious genes in the gene pool

Examples of genetic load in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web In the proximate sense this purging of the genetic load occurs through human misery. Razib Khan, Discover Magazine, 25 Aug. 2010 For example, how much of the Sub-Saharan genetic load in modern Egyptians is post-Roman, and how much pre-Roman? Razib Khan, Discover Magazine, 17 Jan. 2011 In fact with plants selfing lineages achieve just this state of mutational perfection by exposing their recessive alleles and purging their genetic load (this seems less attainable with complex animals). Razib Khan, Discover Magazine, 23 July 2012

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'genetic load.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

1950, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of genetic load was in 1950

Dictionary Entries Near genetic load

Cite this Entry

“Genetic load.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/genetic%20load. Accessed 25 Jul. 2024.

Medical Definition

genetic load

noun
: the decrease in fitness of the average individual in a population due to the presence of deleterious genes or genotypes in the gene pool

More from Merriam-Webster on genetic load

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