Meaning of centromere in English:


Pronunciation /ˈsɛntrə(ʊ)mɪə/


  • The region of a chromosome to which the microtubules of the spindle attach, via the kinetochore, during cell division.

    ‘In fact, we did not find any informative marker in the three chromosomal divisions around the centromere of this chromosome.’
    • ‘The presence of a kinetochore spot indicates the centromere region of each chromosome.’
    • ‘We conclude that chromosomes with damaged centromeres fail to correctly attach to the spindle, thus producing MN and monosomy.’
    • ‘We observed an accumulation of cDNA loci near the centromere for seven chromosomes.’
    • ‘The pertinent variable in this form of meiotic drive is the presence of differing numbers of centromeres on paired homologous chromosomes.’


Early 20th century (originally denoting a region within the oocyst of a malaria parasite): from Latin centrum (see centre) + Greek meros ‘part’. The current sense dates from the 1930s.