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repetitive DNA

Stretches of DNA that repeat themselves throughout a genome, either in tandem or interspersed along the genome. These stretches can comprise up to fifty percent or more of an organism's DNA. It can code for an end product, perhaps a certain enzyme that is needed in large numbers; it can have a structural function (such as a telomere); or it can comprise sequences with no known function.

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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.