codon

[koh-don]
noun Genetics.
a triplet of adjacent nucleotides in the messenger RNA chain that codes for a specific amino acid in the synthesis of a protein molecule.
Also called coding triplet.
Compare anticodon.


Origin:
1960–65, Americanism; code + -on1

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World English Dictionary
codon (ˈkəʊdɒn)
 
n
genetics, biochem a unit that consists of three adjacent bases on a DNA molecule and that determines the position of a specific amino acid in a protein molecule during protein synthesis
 
[C20: from code + -on]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
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Etymonline
Word Origin & History

codon
1963, from code + -on.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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American Heritage
Medical Dictionary

codon co·don (kō'dŏn')
n.
A sequence of three adjacent nucleotides constituting the genetic code that specifies the insertion of an amino acid in a specific structural position in a polypeptide chain during the synthesis of proteins.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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American Heritage
Science Dictionary
codon   (kō'dŏn')  Pronunciation Key 
A sequence of three adjacent nucleotides on a strand of a nucleic acid (such as DNA) that constitutes the genetic code for a specific amino acid that is to be added to a polypeptide chain during protein synthesis. Some amino acids are coded for by more than one codon, and some codons do not signal a particular amino acid but rather signal a stop to protein synthesis.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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American Heritage
Cultural Dictionary
codon [(koh-don)]

A group of three bases on the DNA molecule. Each codon determines the identity of one amino acid in proteins made by the cell.

The American Heritage® New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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Example sentences
But, with more codons than amino acids, many amino acids have more than one codon to describe them.
Some amino-acids are coded by a single triplet code, or codon.
Tool to make nucleotide alignment to codon alignment.
Three such nucleotides-a group known as a codon-tell a cell which amino acids it should use while building a protein.
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