Gene vs Genome: Difference and Comparison

A cell’s genetic information is stored chemically in RNA or DNA. The genetic instructions are determined by the order in which the nucleotide bases are organized in the polynucleotide chain.

A gene is a nucleotide sequence that codes for a specific protein. The entire DNA molecules in humans contain thousands of genes.

An organism’s genome is made up of all of its nuclear DNA.

Key Takeaways

  1. A gene is a DNA segment containing instructions to make a specific protein, while a genome is the complete set of genetic material within an organism.
  2. Genes are responsible for specific traits or characteristics, whereas the genome represents an organism’s genetic blueprint.
  3. Studying individual genes helps researchers understand the role of specific proteins while analyzing the genome provides insight into the bigger picture of an organism’s genetics.

Gene vs Genome

A gene is a specific sequence of DNA that contains the instructions for making a specific protein or set of proteins. In other words, a gene is a functional unit of heredity that determines a particular trait or characteristic. A genome is the complete set of genetic material in an organism. The genome includes all the genes, as well as other non-coding DNA sequences, that make up an organism’s genetic code.

Gene vs Genome

A gene is a little piece of DNA that makes up the entire molecule. Because the primary goal of a gene is to convey information, it also codes for protein production.

The length of a gene consists of hundreds of different bases. There are thousands of genes in a higher organism.

Alleles are a type of genetic variation that can be spontaneously selected. Genetics is the term for the branch of science that studies genes and their properties.

The entire DNA present inside a cell is considered the genome. The components that control protein production, as well as the proteins, can be encoded by the genome—the base pairs in the genome number in the billions.

Only one genome exists in each organism. Genome variation is mostly caused by duplication and horizontal gene transfer. Genomic science is the scientific study of the genome and its properties.

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Comparison Table

Parameters of ComparisonGeneGenome
DefinitionThe element that inherits genetic information is the gene.A set or accumulation of nuclear DNA is called a genome.
Content it containsA small part of the molecule of DNA.It is the whole DNA present inside a cell.
EncodesProtein.Elements that regulate protein synthesis, proteins.
LengthHundred of bases.Billion of bases.
NumberThousand of genes.One genome only.
Name of studyGeneticsGenomics

What is Gene?

The gene is the element that inherits genetic information. It’s a chromosome within a chromosome. A gene is a very small component of the DNA molecule.

Because the primary function of a gene is to convey information, it also codes for protein production. The length of a gene is composed of hundreds of bases.

The number of genes found in a higher creature is in the thousands. Alleles are a type of gene variant that can be selected spontaneously.

Genetics is the name of the field of study that deals with genes and their properties.

On the strand of DNA polynucleotide, a gene is a sequence stretch or locus. It is known as the molecular unit of heredity because it encodes an amino acid sequence of a certain protein.

Genes transmit genetic instructions to children through reproduction. In higher creatures, a single DNA molecule can contain thousands of genes.

gene

What is Genome?

The genome refers to a collection of nuclear DNA. DNA, like chromosomes, is present in the majority of cases. The entire DNA present inside a cell is referred to as the genome.

The genome can encode both the components that control protein synthesis and the proteins themselves.

The genome is made up of billions of base pairs. Every creature is made up of only one genome.

The main source of variation in genomes is horizontal gene duplication and transfer. The study of the genome and its properties is referred to as genomics.

The genome refers to an organism’s whole collection of nuclear DNA. Although some viruses have RNA genomes, the majority of genomes are made up of DNA.

Organelles like chloroplast and mitochondria have their genomes, which are referred to as chloroplast genomes and mitochondrial genomes, respectively.

genome

Main Differences Between Gene and Genome

  1. The element that inherits genetic information is the gene. It is located inside the chromosome. On the other hand, a set or accumulation of nuclear DNA is called a genome. The majority of the time, like chromosomes, DNA exists.
  2. A gene is only a small part of the molecule of DNA. On the other hand, the genome is considered as the whole DNA present inside a cell.
  3. As the main motive of genes is information transfer, thus it encodes the synthesis of protein. On the other hand, the genome is capable of encoding the elements that regulate protein synthesis and the proteins as well.
  4. Gene’s length comprises bases of about some hundred in number. On the other hand, the genome comprises base pairs of some billions in number.
  5. The number of genes a higher organism constitutes is a thousand in number. On the other hand, every organism constitutes one genome only.
  6. Alleles are in the form of variations of genes, which can be selected naturally. On the other hand, duplication and transfer of genes horizontally cause the main variation in genomes.
  7. The name of the study that deals with the gene and its properties is called genetics. On the other hand, the name of the study of the genome and its properties is called genomics.
Difference Between Gene and Genome
References
  1. https://academic.oup.com/bioinformatics/article-abstract/26/18/2334/208255
  2. https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1111/brv.12104
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Last Updated : 04 August, 2023

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25 thoughts on “Gene vs Genome: Difference and Comparison”

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