Gamete: mature male or female reproductive cell (sperm or ovum) with a haploid set of chromosomes (23 for humans). Mature reproductive cells, usually haploid in chromosome number (e.g., sperm or ovum).
Gamma Rays: electromagnetic irradiation (originating inside the nucleus) emitted by excited nuclei. The gamma rays from an isotope will have one or several sharply defined energies.
Gas: material that results from swallowed air or that is created when bacteria in the colon break down waste material. Gas that is released from the rectum is called flatulence.
Gasping: occasional breaths with long pauses in between, not sufficient breathing.
Gatekeeper: a primary care physician/general practitioner (or another provider) who is responsible for overseeing and coordinating all the medical needs of a patient. The gatekeeper must authorize any referral of the patient to a specialist or hospital.
GC-rich Area: many DNA sequences carry long stretches of repeated G and C which often indicate a gene-rich region.
Gel Electrophoresis: a molecular biology laboratory technique in which DNA, RNA, or proteins are separated according to molecular weight, charge, and special characteristics in an electric field applied to a gel. For example, because DNA is negatively charged, it migrates toward the positively charged electrode. See -- electrophoresis.
Gender: refers to the economic, social and cultural attributes and opportunities associated with being male or female in a particular point in time.
Gender Equality: means equal treatment of women and men in laws and policies, and equal access to resources and services within families, communities and society at large.
Gender Equity: means fairness and justice in the distribution of benefits and responsibilities between women and men. It often requires women-specific programs and policies to end existing inequalities.
Gender Discrimination: refers to any distinction, exclusion or restriction made on the basis of socially constructed gender roles and norms which prevents a person from enjoying full human rights.
Gene: a unit of heredity responsible for the inheritance of a specific trait that occupies a fixed chromosomal site and corresponds to a sequence of nucleotides along a DNA molecule. The fundamental physical and functional unit of heredity. A gene is an ordered sequence of nucleotides located in a particular position on a particular chromosome that encodes a specific functional product (i.e., a protein or RNA molecule). See also -- gene expression.
Gene Amplification: repeated copying of a piece of DNA; a characteristic of tumor cells. See also -- gene, oncogene.
Gene Chip Technology: development of cDNA microarrays from a large number of genes. Used to monitor and measure changes in gene expression for each gene represented on the chip.
Gene Deletion: the deletion of part or all of a gene through removal of DNA sequences by any of several mechanisms.
Gene Expression: the process by which a gene's coded information is converted into the structures present and operating in the cell. Expressed genes include those that are transcribed into mRNA and then translated into protein and those that are transcribed into RNA but not translated into protein (e.g., transfer and ribosomal RNAs).
Gene Family: group of closely related genes that make similar products.
Gene Library: see -- genomic library.
Gene Mapping: determination of the relative positions of genes on a DNA molecule (chromosome or plasmid) and of the distance, in linkage units or physical units, between them.
Gene Pool: all the variations of genes in a species. See also -- allele, gene, polymorphism.
Gene Prediction: predictions of possible genes made by a computer program based on how well a stretch of DNA sequence matches known gene sequences
Gene Product: the biochemical material, either RNA or protein, resulting from expression of a gene. The amount of gene product is used to measure how active a gene is; abnormal amounts can be correlated with disease-causing alleles.
Gene Rearrangement: the process by which part or all of a gene is moved from its normal location in the genome to another site within the genome.
Gene Testing: see -- genetic testing, genetic screening.
Gene Therapy: an experimental procedure aimed at replacing, manipulating, or supplementing nonfunctional or misfunctioning genes with healthy genes. See also -- gene, inherit, somatic cell gene therapy, germ line gene therapy.
Gene Transfer: incorporation of new DNA into an organism's cells, usually by a vector such as a modified virus. Used in gene therapy. See also -- mutation, gene therapy, vector.
General Estimated Mortality Rate, Adjusted by Age: the estimated total number of deaths in a population of a given sex, divided by the total number of that population after removing the effect of differences in the age distribution, expressed per 100,000 population, for a given year, in a given country, territory, or geographic area.
General (Medical) Practitioner (GP): a general doctor, or family doctor, who is the first point of contact with the health services for all non-emergency cases.
Generic Drugs: drugs which are identical in chemical composition to a brand name pharmaceutical preparation, but produced by competitors after the firm's patent expire.
Genetic Code: the sequence of nucleotides, coded in triplets (codons) along the mRNA, that determines the sequence of amino acids in protein synthesis. A gene's DNA sequence can be used to predict the mRNA sequence, and the genetic code can in turn be used to predict the amino acid sequence.
Genetic Counseling: provides patients and their families with education and information about genetic-related conditions and helps them make informed decisions.
Genetic Discrimination: prejudice against those who have or are likely to develop an inherited disorder.
Genetic Engineering: altering the genetic material of cells or organisms to enable them to make new substances or perform new functions.
Genetic engineering technology: see -- recombinant DNA technology.
Genetic Illness: sickness, physical disability, or other disorder resulting from the inheritance of one or more deleterious alleles.
Genetic Informatics: see -- bioinformatics.
Genetic Map: see -- linkage map.
Genetic Marker: a gene or other identifiable portion of DNA whose inheritance can be followed. See also -- chromosome, DNA, gene, inherit.
Genetic Material: see -- genome.
Genetic Mosaic: an organism in which different cells contain different genetic sequence. This can be the result of a mutation during development or fusion of embryos at an early developmental stage.
Genetic Polymorphism: difference in DNA sequence among individuals, groups, or populations (e.g., genes for blue eyes versus brown eyes).
Genetic Predisposition: susceptibility to a genetic disease. May or may not result in actual development of the disease.
Genetic Screening: testing a group of people to identify individuals at high risk of having or passing on a specific genetic disorder.
Genetic Testing: analyzing an individual's genetic material to determine predisposition to a particular health condition or to confirm a diagnosis of genetic disease.
Genetics: the study of inheritance patterns of specific traits.
Genome: the entire complement of genetic material in a chromosome set. All the genetic material in the chromosomes of a particular organism; its size is generally given as its total number of base pairs.
Genome Project: research and technology-development effort aimed at mapping and sequencing the genome of human beings and certain model organisms. See also -- Human Genome Initiative.
Genomic Imprinting: the existence of parent-of-origin differences in the expression of certain genes.
Genomic Library: a collection of clones made from a set of randomly generated overlapping DNA fragments that represent the entire genome of an organism. See also -- library, arrayed library.
Genomic Sequence: see -- DNA.
Genomics: the study of genes and their function.
Genotype: the genetic constitution of an organism, as distinguished from its physical appearance (its phenotype).
Germ Cell: sperm and egg cells and their precursors. Germ cells are haploid and have only one set of chromosomes (23 in all), while all other cells have two copies (46 in all).
Germ Line: the continuation of a set of genetic information from one generation to the next. See also -- inherit.
Germ Line Gene Therapy: an experimental process of inserting genes into germ cells or fertilized eggs to cause a genetic change that can be passed on to offspring. May be used to alleviate effects associated with a genetic disease. See also -- genomics, somatic cell gene therapy.
Germ Line Genetic Mutation: see -- mutation.
Germline Mosaicism: mosaicism that is confined to the gonad.
Gerontopsychiatric: mental health care for older people.
Global Budget: an aggregate cash sum, fixed in advance, intended to cover the total cost of a service, usually for one year ahead.
Global Health: global health refers to the transnational impacts of globalization upon health determinants and health problems which are the beyond the control of individual nations.
Goal: a general objective towards which to strive. Unlike objectives and targets, goals are not constrained by time or existing resources, nor are they necessarily attainable but are rather an ultimate desired state towards which actions and resources are directed.
Good: term meaning tangible economic products that contribute to the satisfaction of demand.
Governance: the exercise of political, economic and administrative authority in the management of a country's affairs at all levels. It is a neutral concept comprising the complex mechanisms, processes, relationships and institutions through which citizens and groups articulate their interests, exercise their rights and obligations and mediate their differences. (UNDP)
GP: general practitioner.
Gray (Gy): the special name for the unit of absorbed dose and specific energy impacted; 1 Gy = 1 joule / kg = 100 rads.
Gross Domestic Product (GDP), per capita, international $ (PPP-adjusted): the average per capita market value of the sum of gross values added of all resident institutional units engaged in production, for a given national economy, at a given period in time, usually a year, expressed in international dollars using purchasing power parity rates. The gross domestic product (GDP) at market prices is the sum of gross value added by all resident producers in the economy plus any taxes and minus any subsidies that are not included in the valuation of output. GDP measures the total output of goods and services for final use occurring within the domestic territory of a given country, regardless of the allocation to domestic and foreign claims; it provides an aggregate measure of production. The residency of an institutional unit is defined on the basis of economic interest in the territory for more than a year. An international dollar is defined as the currency unit that has the same purchasing power over GNP as the US dollar in the United States. Technical Note: GDP figures are those estimated by the World Bank from the corresponding ones in the United Nations' Systems of National Accounts, expressed in domestic currency. GDP is calculated without making deductions for depreciation of fabricated assets or for depletion and degradation of natural resources. Purchasing power parity conversion factors are estimated by the World Bank based on data collected by the International Comparison Program (ICP), which is coordinated by the United Nations regional economic commissions and other international organizations. Per capita figures are based on the World Bank's population estimates and projections.
Gross Primary Enrollment Ratio: total number of pupils or of a given sex enrolled in primary education, regardless of age, expressed as a percentage of the corresponding population of the age group, which officially corresponds to primary schooling, at a specific period of time, usually a year, for a given country, territory, or geographic area. According to the 1997 International Standard Classification of Education (ISCED-97), adopted by UNESCO, primary education is defined as the level of education which the main function is to provide the basic elements of education at such establishments as elementary schools, and primary schools. Technical Note: Gross enrollment ratios are based on the enrollment estimates made by UNESCO from national enrollment figures and population mid-year estimates from the corresponding United Nations fertility medium-variant quinquennial population projections. All ratios are expressed as percentages and may exceed 100 because of early entry, repetition, and, for countries with almost universal education at a given level, whenever the actual age distribution of pupils extends beyond the official school ages.
Gross National Income (GNI), per capita, current US$ (Atlas Method): the Gross National Income, GNI, formerly referred to as gross national product (GNP), measures the total domestic and foreign value added claimed by residents, at a given period in time, usually a year, expressed in current US dollars using the World Bank Atlas method. GNI comprises GDP plus net receipts of primary income (compensation of employees and property income) from nonresident sources. Technical Note: GNI figures are those estimated by the World Bank from the corresponding ones in the United Nations' Systems of National Accounts, expressed in domestic currency. The World Bank Atlas method of conversion is used to smooth fluctuations in prices and exchange rates in the cross-country comparison of national incomes. The conversion factor averages the exchange rate for a given year and the two preceding years, adjusted for the difference between the rate of inflation in the country and that in Japan, the United Kingdom, the United States, and the Euro Zone.
Gross National Income (GNI), per capita, international $ (PPP-adjusted): the Gross National Income, GNI, formerly referred to as gross national product (GNP) measures the total domestic and foreign value added claimed by residents at a given period in time, usually a year, expressed in international dollars using purchasing power parity rates. GNI comprises GDP plus net receipts of primary income (compensation of employees and property income) from nonresident sources. GNI provides an aggregate measure of income. An international dollar is defined as the currency unit that has the same purchasing power over GNI as the US dollar in the United States. Technical Note: GNI figures are those estimated by the World Bank from the corresponding ones in the United Nations' systems of National Accounts, expressed in domestic currency. Purchasing power parity conversion factors are estimated by the World Bank based on data collected by the International Comparison Program (ICP), which is coordinated by the United Nations regional economic commissions and other international organizations. Per capita figures are based on the World Bank's population estimates and projections.
Group Interview: sometimes called a focus group discussion, group interviews are small (usually 5-15 people) interactive discussions led by an impartial facilitator, usually with a focused agenda.
Growth Factor: protein that acts on cells to promote cell growth.
Growth Factor Receptors: proteins that interact with growth factors and transmit the growth signal to the cell.
Guanine (G): a nitrogenous base, one member of the base pair GC (guanine and cytosine) in DNA. See also -- base pair, nucleotide.
Guidelines: sets of steps which can be taken in performing a task or implementing a policy and the manner of so doing.
Gyandromorph: organisms that have both male and female cells and therefore express both male and female characteristics.
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