Difference Between Gene and Allele

Aside from some viruses, genes in the rest of organisms are made up of DNA, a complex molecule that encodes genetic information for the transmission of inherited traits. Alleles are also genetic sequences, and they too code for the transmission of traits. So what is the difference between a gene and an allele?

A gene is a unit of genetic information. The short answer is that an allele is a variant of a gene. More specifically, each gene is a piece of DNA that determines a specific trait, while an allele is a specific form of a gene.

Each gene is located at a specific location (location on a chromosome) in two copies, with one copy of the gene being inherited from each parent. However, the copies are not necessarily the same. When copies of a gene differ from each other, they are called alleles.

A given gene can have several different alleles, although in each individual there are only two alleles present at the gene’s location.

Another important difference between the two is that alleles come in pairs. They are also divided into recessive and dominant categories and are responsible for the variation in which a given trait can be expressed. Genes have no such differentiation and are therefore responsible for the expression of traits.

An interesting difference between alleles and genes is that alleles produce opposite phenotypes that are inherently opposite. When the two partners of a gene are inherently homogeneous, they are said to be homozygous.

However, if the pair consists of different alleles, it is said to be heterozygous. In the case of heterozygous alleles, the dominant allele is expressed.

The dominance of a gene is determined by whether AA and Aa are phenotypically the same. Finding dominants is easier as they express themselves better when paired with either allele.

Alleles are basically different types of the same gene. Let’s explain it this way: if your eye color was determined by a single gene, the color blue would be carried by one allele and the color green would be carried by another. Fascinating, isn’t it?

Difference between gene and allele

We all inherit a pair of genes from each of our parents. These genes are exactly the same for each other. So what causes the differences between individuals? It is the result of the alleles.

When it comes to features, the difference between the two becomes even more apparent. A trait is related to what you see, so it’s the physical expression of the genes themselves. Alleles determine the different versions of the genes we see. A gene is like a composite machine. However, how it works depends on the alleles.

Both alleles and genes play an extremely important role in the development of living things. Of course, the difference manifests itself most colorfully in humans! So the next time you see the diversity of hair and eye color all around you, take a moment and admire the phenomenal power of both the gene and the allele!

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