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Any of a group of nonallelic genes, each having a small quantitative effect, that together produce a wide range of phenotypic variation. Also called multiple factor.


(Genetics) any of a group of genes that each produce a small quantitative effect on a particular characteristic of the phenotype, such as height


(ˈpɒl iˌdʒin)

any of a group of genes that act together cumulatively to produce a trait, as stature or skin pigmentation.
[1940–45; back formation from polygenic; see poly-, gene, -ic]
pol`y•gen′ic (-ˈdʒɛn ɪk) adj.
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.polygene - a gene that by itself has little effect on the phenotype but which can act together with others to produce observable variations
cistron, gene, factor - (genetics) a segment of DNA that is involved in producing a polypeptide chain; it can include regions preceding and following the coding DNA as well as introns between the exons; it is considered a unit of heredity; "genes were formerly called factors"
References in periodicals archive ?
The field of genetics has moved toward creating polygene scores that aggregate across many genes and show predictive power in cases where individual genes cannot be detected (Purcell et al.
1993), all these measurements are distributed normally and their inheritance is achieved by polygene.
This study was funded in part by the European Commission through the POLYGENE (LSHC-CT- 2005-018827) and GENADDICT (LSHM-CT-2004-005166) grants; by the US National Institutes of Health (R01-DA017932); a research investment grant of the Radboud University Nijmegen Medical Centre; and through numerous grants to collaborating institutions.