Definition of Mendelism

Mendelism: The principles of genetics, specifically of single-gene traits, based on the work of Gregor Mendel (1822-84), a Moravian monk and biologist who established the laws that are the foundation of classical genetics.

Mendel lived in an Augustinian monastery where teaching and research were emphasized and where he was given the freedom to pursue scientific studies in the diverse fields that interested him: mathematics, botany, physics, and meteorology. His meticulous controlled experiments with breeding peas in the monastery garden led him to conclude that the heritable units (now called genes) were not blends of parental traits but rather were separate physical entities passed individually from one generation to the next.

The report in 1865 of Mendel's discoveries went unnoticed for some years. Charles Darwin never read the copy of Mendel's paper he received The only scientist who did acknowledge it (a German botanist named Nageli) managed to misinterpret it. Finally in 1900 (16 years after his death), Mendel's paper was rediscovered independently by three different scientists. With the rediscovery of Mendel's work, he came to be recognized as the father of the new science of genetics.

Mendelian inheritance is the manner in which genes and traits are passed from parents to their children. The modes of Mendelian inheritance are autosomal dominant, autosomal recessive, X-linked dominant and X-linked recessive.

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