Autosomal dominant: A pattern of inheritance in which an affected individual has one copy of a mutant gene and one normal gene on a pair of autosomal chromosomes. (In contrast, autosomal recessive diseases require that the individual have two copies of the mutant gene.) Individuals with autosomal dominant diseases have a 50-50 chance of passing the mutant gene and therefore the disorder on to each of their children. Examples of autosomal dominant diseases include Huntington disease, neurofibromatosis, and polycystic kidney disease.
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Last Editorial Review: 12/11/2018