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D genes Sets of gene segments lying between the V and J genes in the immunoglobulin heavy chain genes, and in the T-cell receptor β and δchain genes which are recombined with V and J genes during ontogeny

Deadaptation Reversible loss of a specific property due to the absence of the appropriate inducer (not always defined)

A term implying irreversible loss of the specialized properties that a cell would have expressed in vivo. As evidence accumulates that cultures "dedifferentiate" by a combination of selection of undifferentiated cells or stromal cells and deadaptation resulting from the absence of the appropriate inducers, this term is going out of favor. In is still correctly applied to progressive loss of differentiated morphology in histological observations of, for example, tumor tissue

Defined medium
A culture medium whose exact chemical compositions are known.

Degeneration In reference to the genetic code, having more than one codon specifying a particular amino acid.

Denaturation Of nucleic acid molecules: breakdown by chemical or physical means of the hydrogen bonds involved in base-pairing. Of proteins: irreversible destruction of conformation by heat

Dendrite Highly branched extension of neuron cell body; receives synaptic input from other neurons.

Dendritic cells A set of cells present in tissues, which capture antigens and migrate to the lymph nodes and spleen, where they are particularly active in presenting the processed antigen to T cells.

Density-gradient centrifugation Separation of molecules and particles on the basis of buoyant density, by centrifugation in a concentrated sucrose or cesium chloride solution.

Density limitation of growth Mitotic inhibition correlated with an increase in cell density

Desmosome Cell junction that holds two cells together; consists of plasma membranes of adjacent cells linked by fibers yet separated by a 20-nm extracellular space filled with a cementing substance.

Deoxyribonuclease (DNase) An enzyme that degrades DNA.

Dialysis Process of altering the concentration of substances in the blood by using concentration differences between plasma and a bathing solution separated by a semipermeable membrane

Diaphragm Dome-shaped skeletal muscle sheet that separates the abdominal and thoracic cavities; principal muscle of respiration.

Dideoxynucleotide A modified nucleotide that lacks the 3'-hdroxyl group and so prevents further chain elongation when incorporated into a growing polynucleotide. Used in nucleotide sequencing technique.

Differentiation Process usually involving changes in gene expression by which a precursor cell becomes a distinct structurally and functionally specialized cell type.

Diploid In eukaryotes, an organism or cell with two chromosome complements, one derived from each haploid gamete. Each chromosome represented as a pair, identical in the autosomes and female sex chromosomes and nonidentical in male sex chromosomes, and corresponding to the chromosome number and morphology of most somatic cells of the species from which the cells were derived

Disarmed plasmid A Ti plasmid that has had some or all of the T-DNA genes removed, so it is no longer able to promote cancerous growth of plant cells.

DNA sequencing Determination of the order of nucleotides in a DNA molecule.

Double digestion Cleavage of a DNA molecule with two different restriction endonucleases, either concurrently of consecutively.

Dynein An ATP powered motor protein in cilia and flagella that accounts for the movement of these organelles. ATP binding to dynein and its hydrolysis causes the dynein bridges to sequentially break and form new bonds with adjacent microtubule doublets.

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