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Encyclopedia > Canalisation (genetics)
Norms of reaction for two genotypes. Genotype B shows a strongly bimodal distribution indicating differentiation into distinct phenotypes. Each phenotype is buffered against environmental variation - it is canalised.
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Norms of reaction for two genotypes. Genotype B shows a strongly bimodal distribution indicating differentiation into distinct phenotypes. Each phenotype is buffered against environmental variation - it is canalised.

In genetics, canalisation is a measure of the ability of a genotype to produce the same phenotype regardless of variability of its environment. The term canalisation was coined by C. H. Waddington, who also helped explain its developmental mechanisms. He also introduced the epigenetic landscape, in which a canalised trait is illustrated as a valley enclosed by high ridges, safely guiding the phenotype to its "fate". In ecology and biology, a norm of reaction describes the pattern of phenotypic expression of a single genotype across a range of environments. ... Genetics (from the Greek genno γεννώ= give birth) is the science of genes, heredity, and the variation of organisms. ... The genotype is the specific genetic makeup (the specific genome) of an individual, usually in the form of DNA. It codes for the phenotype of that individual. ... The phenotype of an individual organism is either its total physical appearance and constitution or a specific manifestation of a trait, such as size or eye color, that varies between individuals. ... Conrad Hal Waddington (1905 — 1975), known to his friends as Wad, was a developmental biologist, paleontologist, geneticist, embryologist and philosopher. ...


See also

The development of phenotype (edit)
Key concepts: genotype-phenotype distinction | norms of reaction | gene-environment interaction | heritability
Genetic architecture: dominance relationship | epistasis | polygenic inheritance | pleiotropy | plasticity | canalisation | fitness landscape
Non-genetic influences: epigenetic inheritance | epigenetics | maternal effect | Lamarckism
Evolution of genetic systems: evolvability | mutational robustness | evolution of sex
Influential figures: C. H. Waddington | Richard Lewontin
Debates: Nature versus nurture
List of evolutionary biology topics

 
 

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