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Law of Segregation

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(genetics) Gregor Mendel's law stating that paired alleles separate during gamete formation. Consequently, each gamete would contain only one copy of every paired unit factors.


Breeding and testing about 5,000 pea plants, he was able to come up with crucial generalizations that were later on used as founding principles of the Mendelian inheritance or Mendel's Principles of Heredity. The so-called "Mendel's laws of inheritance" came about based on the set of principles of Gregor Mendel. These laws are the Law of Segregation, the Law of Independent Assortment, the Law of Dominance, and the Law of Unit Characters.

The Law of Segregation holds that the zygote formed from the union of gametes from its parents during fertilization contain unit factors (now called genes) are pure or remained uncontaminated from the time that the zygote is formed through the time that it grows and develops toward maturity. At the time that the offspring produces its own gametes, members of these paired unit factors segregate from one another and enter independently into the newly formed gametes.

This theory was found true when meiosis was extensively delineated in the following years. During anaphase II of meiosis, the genes on the homologous chromosomes separate as the homologous chromosomes move apart from each other toward the opposite sides of the dividing cell.


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