Campbell Problem 12

Molecular Genetics Problem 12

12. About 5% of individuals with Downs syndrome are the result of chromosomal translocation. In most of these cases, one copy of chromosome 21 becomes attached to chromosome 14. How does this translocation lead to children with Down syndrome?


The case of having a chromosomal fragment joining to a nonhomologous chromosome is called translocation.

Children who have Down’s Syndrome will either have an extra chromosome 21, thus having a total of 47 chromosomes, or about 5% receive a combined 14-21 chromosome combination. (Chromosome 21 links to #14).

In meiosis, the combined 14-21 chromosome will actually behave as a single chromosome. Should this mutated gamete join a normal one during fertilization there will be three chromosome 21’s in the resulting zygote.