Difference Between Linkage and Crossing Over

In Eukaryotes, crossing over and genetic linkage are two different but related events. Crossing over is the phenomenon where the genetic material gets exchanged in the germline. Genetic linkage is the tendency of genes to stay together in a chromosome. Read on to explore how these two processes vary from each other and if they possess any similarities.

Difference Between Crossing Over and Linkage

Linkage

Crossing Over

Ensures that the genes stay in a chromosome to inherit together

Crossing over enables the separation of genes in a chromosome and separates it into various gametes

The strength of the genetic linkage between 2 genes is thought to be inversely proportional to the distance between them in the chromosome

The probability of two genes crossing over is directly proportional to the distance between them in the chromosome

The strength of the linkage between 2 genes can increase if the distance between them decreases

The probability of two genes crossing over decreases if the distance between them decreases

Ensures the continuity of the parental trait in the offspring

Causes alternations in the parental traits in the offspring

Reduces the probability of variation through sexual reproduction

Increases the probability of introducing variability in sexual reproduction

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