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Chimera - Genetics

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Define Chimera Genetics

Chimera Genetics: A genetic chimerism, also known as a chimaera, is a single organism made up of cells with several genotypes. In animals, it refers to an entity originating through two or even more zygotes, that may include blood cells with various blood types, slight differences in shape (phenotype), as well as the possession of both males and females sex organs unless the zygotes would be of opposite genders.

Animal chimaeras are created when several fertilised eggs are combined. The different types of tissue throughout plant chimaeras, on the other hand, may come from the very same zygote, and the distinction is sometimes owing to mutation while natural cell division. Genetic chimerism is usually undetectable on a casual examination, nevertheless, it's been discovered during the process of proving parentage.

Organ transplantation, which gives one particular tissue that originated from a separate genome, seems to be another aspect that chimerism can happen in animals. Bone marrow transplantation, for instance, also decides the recipient's blood type.

Animal Chimera

An animal chimera genetic engineering is a single organism made up of two or even more genetically different populations of cells originating from various zygotes engaging in sexual reproduction. The organism is termed a mosaic unless the various cells all come from that very same zygote. At least four parent cells are necessary to produce innate chimaeras (two fertilised eggs or early embryos tend to fuse together). Each population of cells retains its own personality, leading to an organism that is a combination of tissues. Human chimerism has indeed been documented in the past.

This disease may be innate or synthetic, resulting from the infusion of allogeneic hematopoietic cells throughout transplantation or transfusion, for instance.

Tetragametic Chimerism: Congenital chimerism is a form of tetragametic chimerism. The fertilisation of two different ova through two sperm, accompanied by aggregation of both the two at the blastocyst or zygote levels, causes this disease. This results in the formation of an organism with mixed cell lines. To put it differently, a chimaera is created by the union of two nonidentical twins. As a result, they may be either male or female, or who have mixed intersex traits. 

As the organism matures, it can acquire organs with different sets of chromosomes. The "chimera genetics may, for instance, do have liver made up of cells with a single set of chromosomes and a kidney made up of cells with a different set of chromosomes. It has happened in humans before, and it was once considered to be exceedingly rare, but new research shows that it is no longer the scenario.

Microchimerism: The existence of a limited number of cells that are genetically different from that of the host person is known as microchimerism. Many other people are born with several cells that are genetically similar to their mothers', and then as people grow older, the percentage of such cells decreases. People with more genetically similar cells to the mothers were shown to have increased rates of autoimmune disorders, possibly because the immune system is capable of killing these cells, and perhaps a common immune deficiency prohibits it from doing so, causing autoimmune issues.

Symbiotic Chimerism in Anglerfish: Genetic chimerism is a common occurrence in adult Ceratioid anglerfish which is a crucial component of their lifespan. When a male reaches maturity, he starts looking for a girl. The male anglerfish looks for a female anglerfish via powerful olfactory (or smell) receptors. The man, which is less than an inch long, cuts on her skin and produces an enzyme that helps to digest both his mouth as well as her body's skin, fusing the two at a time to the blood vessel point. Although the male's survival depends on this connection, this will ultimately consume him as the two anglerfish merge into a single hermaphroditic entity.

Germline Chimera in Genetic Engineering: Germline chimera in genetic engineering happens whenever an organism's germ cells (such as sperm cells and egg cells) are genetically different from its own. Due to placental fusion during development, marmosets can bear the reproductive cells of their (fraternal) twin siblings, according to new research. (Fraternal twins are almost always born to marmosets.)

Genetic Chimerism Human

Genetic chimera human have been observed in humans on a variety of occasions.

  • After refusing a mandatory sex examination in July 1950, Dutch sprinter Foekje Dillema has been expelled from the national team; subsequent inquiries found a Y-chromosome in her body cells, and research revealed that she was most definitely a 46,XX/46,XY mosaic female.

  • The British Medical Journal published a paper on a human chimaera in 1953. A woman's blood was discovered to contain two distinct blood groups. This is thought to be the product of her twin brother's cells residing in her body. According to a 1996 review, blood group chimerism is not uncommon.

  • In 1998, another human chimaera was identified, this time involving a male human with partially formed female organs due to chimerism. In-vitro fertilisation had been used to conceive him.

  • Lydia Fairchild has been refused public assistance in Washington state in the year 2002 after human chimera DNA" evidence suggested she is not really the mother of her son. The defence was able to prove that Fairchild, too, was a chimaera with two sets of DNA and that one of those sets may have been the mother of the twins, thanks to a prosecutor who learned of a human chimaera in New England named Karen Keegan.

  • In a 2002 article published in the New England Journal of Medicine, a woman was diagnosed with tetragametic chimerism upon undergoing kidney transplant preparations which needed the patient and her close family to conduct histocompatibility testing, which revealed that she's not the biological mother of two of the three children.

Chimera Identification

Chimerism is extremely rare, with just 100 reported cases in humans. Nevertheless, this could be because humans aren't conscious that they have this disease in the first place. Besides just some physical manifestations like hyper-pigmentation, hypo-pigmentation, or seeing two distinctly coloured eyes, chimerism typically seems to have no signs or symptoms. Such signs, furthermore, do not always indicate that an individual is a chimaera and can only be considered symptoms. The whole condition is normally discovered by mistake as a result of a forensic examination or curiosity about a negative maternity/paternity DNA test.

The identification of the previously unknown second genome is produced by simply undertaking a DNA test, that typically consists of either a quick cheek swab or a blood test, thus recognizing the person as a chimaera.

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FAQs on Chimera - Genetics

1. Define Heterochromia Iridum?

Ans. Heterochromia refers to colour differences. The word is most commonly used to explain iris colour variations, but it may also be used to describe colour variations in hair or skin. The synthesis, distribution, and concentration of melanin decide heterochromia (a pigment). It could be inherited, or it could be influenced by genetic mosaicism, genetic chimerism eyes, illness, or trauma.

2. Is it True that a Mule is a Chimaera?

Ans. A chimaera is an organism made up of the DNA, cells, tissues, and organs of two or more people. Mules are hybrids, not chimaeras since they are born from just a male donkey and a female horse.

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