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allele frequency

The allele frequency represents the incidence of a gene variant in a population. Alleles are variant forms of a gene that are located at the same position, or genetic locus, on a chromosome. An allele frequency is calculated by dividing the number of times the allele of interest is observed in a population by the total number of copies of all the alleles at that particular genetic locus in the population. Allele frequencies can be represented as a decimal, a percentage, or a fraction. In a population, allele frequencies are a reflection of genetic diversity. Changes in allele frequencies over time can indicate that genetic drift is occurring or that new mutations have been introduced into the population.

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