Dictionary of Human Evolution and Biology

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Similarity of a structure due to common heredity or to shared descent from a common ancestor, and which, by inference, was also present in that common ancestor. In zoology and biology, the definition is strict; however, among some geneticists and molecular biologists, homology can refer to similarity of convergent nucleotide sequences, or even to differing sequences that perform similar molecular functions.

See synapomorphy.

Cf. analogy.

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