nounAnatomy & Physiology
A small, densely staining structure in the cell nuclei of female mammals, consisting of a condensed, inactive X chromosome. It is regarded as diagnostic of genetic femaleness.
- In some tissues, the inactive X chromosome can be identified in the nucleus as a Barr body and X inactivation provides an important model for the inheritance of gene expression.
- The formation of Barr bodies is the strategy that humans use for what is called dosage compensation.
- If the Barr bodies of a normal female were missing, she would exhibit Turners Syndrome.
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