- any gene that is a causative factor in the initiation of cancerous growth.
Origin of oncogene
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
- any of several genes, first identified in viruses but present in all cells, that when abnormally activated can cause cancer
C20 from Gk onkos mass, tumour + gene
Word Origin and History for oncogene
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
- A gene that causes the transformation of normal cells into cancerous tumor cells, especially a viral gene that transforms a host cell into a tumor cell.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
- A gene that causes normal cells to become cancerous either because the gene is mutated or because the gene is expressed at the wrong time in development. See Note at cancer.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
Genes in animal DNA that cause cancer.
Every cell contains genes that, when altered slightly, can become oncogenes.
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.