pro·​to·​gene | \ ˈprōtə+ˌ- \

Definition of protogene

1 : a dominant gene or factor
2 [International Scientific Vocabulary, from New Latin protogenes primeval, firstborn, from Greek prōtogenēs, from prōt- prot- + -genēs born] : a hypothetical mutable primary unit that is capable of reduplication, is held to have differentiated from nonliving matter, and is regarded as a precursor of living beings

History and Etymology for protogene

prot- + gene

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“Protogene.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 24 Sep. 2022.

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