Homologous

Definition

adjective

(general)

Showing a degree of similarity (e.g. in position, structure, function or characteristics) that may indicate a common origin.

(biology)

Having similar structure and anatomical position (but not necessarily the same function) in different organisms suggesting a common ancestry or evolutionary origin (e.g. wings of bats and arms of humans are homologous).

(chemistry)

Pertaining to a series of organic compounds that differ by a constant increment, for instance by the addition of a CH2 group, as in homologous series, e.g. the alkanes: methane, ethane, propane, etc.

(genetics)

Pertaining to (a member of) a pair of chromosomes, as in homologous chromosomes.


Supplement

Word origin: from Greek homologos = agreeing, correspondent.

Related forms: homology (noun).
Related terms: homologous chromosomes.

Compare: analogous, heterologous.


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