Definition of penetrance in English:


Syllabification: pen·e·trance
Pronunciation: /ˈpenətrəns


  • The extent to which a particular gene or set of genes is expressed in the phenotypes of individuals carrying it, measured by the proportion of carriers showing the characteristic phenotype.
    More example sentences
    • Because of reduced penetrance, individuals of different genotypes can have the same phenotype.
    • With the exception of the relatively rare high penetrance, single gene disorders, genetic tests differ little from most other medical tests, providing evidence of statistical risk only.
    • High penetrance susceptibility genes probably account for no more than 5-10% of cases.


1930s: from German Penetranz.

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Word of the day skosh
Pronunciation: skōSH
a small amount; a little