Cummings, Michael R. Department of Biological Sciences, University of Illinois, Chicago, Illinois.
Last reviewed:July 2020
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- Experimental work
- Law of segregation
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Fundamental principles governing the transmission of genetic traits, as discovered by Gregor Mendel. Mendelism is the term used to describe the basic laws of genetic inheritance (Fig. 1). These operating laws were formulated by Gregor Johann Mendel (1822–1884), an Augustinian monk, who conducted a number of notable experiments on plant hybrids. Mendel published his scientific work in 1866; however, it went largely unheralded until 1900, when other investigators performed similar hybridization experiments and brought his work to the attention of the scientific world. The rediscovery of his work is regarded as the beginning of genetics as an organized discipline. Since then, genetic crosses and breeding endeavors with many different organisms have confirmed the fundamental nature and significance of Mendel's work. See also: Animal breeding; Genetics; Plant breeding
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