NCI Dictionary of Genetics Terms

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Welcome to the NCI Dictionary of Genetics Terms, which contains technical definitions for more than 150 terms related to genetics. These definitions were developed by the PDQ® Cancer Genetics Editorial Board to support the evidence-based, peer-reviewed PDQ cancer genetics information summaries.

The process by which introns, the noncoding regions of genes, are excised out of the primary messenger RNA transcript, and the exons (i.e., coding regions) are joined together to generate mature messenger RNA. The latter serves as the template for synthesis of a specific protein.