Medical Definition of Gene amplification

  • Medical Author:
    Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD

    Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD, is a U.S. board-certified Anatomic Pathologist with subspecialty training in the fields of Experimental and Molecular Pathology. Dr. Stöppler's educational background includes a BA with Highest Distinction from the University of Virginia and an MD from the University of North Carolina. She completed residency training in Anatomic Pathology at Georgetown University followed by subspecialty fellowship training in molecular diagnostics and experimental pathology.

Gene amplification: Making multiple copies of a gene. Repeated copying of a gene.

Gene amplification plays a role in cancer cells. A tumor cell amplifies, or copies, DNA segments as a result of cell signals and sometimes environmental events.

Amplification can occur in vivo (in the living individual) or in vitro (literally "in glass", or in a plastic vessel in the laboratory).

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Reviewed on 12/11/2018

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