[ kar-ee-uh-tahyp ]
/ ˈkær i əˌtaɪp /
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noun Genetics.

the chromosomes of a cell, usually displayed as a systematized arrangement of chromosome pairs in descending order of size.



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Origin of karyotype

First recorded in 1925–30; karyo- + type
kar·y·o·typ·ic [kar-ee-uh-tip-ik], /ˌkær i əˈtɪp ɪk/, kar·y·o·typ·i·cal, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2021

British Dictionary definitions for karyotype

/ (ˈkærɪəˌtaɪp) /


the appearance of the chromosomes in a somatic cell of an individual or species, with reference to their number, size, shape, etc

verb (tr)

to determine the karyotype of (a cell)
karyotypic (ˌkærɪəˈtɪpɪk) or karyotypical, adjective
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Medical definitions for karyotype

[ kărē-ə-tīp′ ]


The characterization of the chromosomal complement of an individual or a species, including number, form, and size of the chromosomes.
A photomicrograph of chromosomes arranged according to a standard classification.


To classify and array the chromosome complement of an organism or a species according to the arrangement, number, size, shape, or other characteristics of the chromosomes.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

Scientific definitions for karyotype

[ kărē-ə-tīp′ ]


An organized visual profile of the chromosomes in the nucleus of a body cell of an organism. Karyotypes are prepared using cells in the metaphase stage of cell division, when chromosomal strands have coiled together and duplicated, rendering them easily visible under a microscope after staining. Photomicrographs of the stained chromosomes are then arranged in a standard format according to size, the relative position of the centromere, and other criteria. The normal human karyotype consists of 46 chromosomes.


To prepare the karyotype of an organism.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

Cultural definitions for karyotype

[ (kar-ee-uh-teyep) ]

The complete set of chromosomes that constitutes the entire genome of a species. The human karyotype contains forty-six chromosomes, twenty-three from each parent. This set is contained in the nucleus of almost every cell in the body

The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
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