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Comparative genomic hybridization

Part 1. Genetics

1.2. Cytogenetics

Basic Techniques and Approaches

  1. Brynn Levy

Published Online: 15 APR 2005

DOI: 10.1002/047001153X.g102408

Encyclopedia of Genetics, Genomics, Proteomics and Bioinformatics

Encyclopedia of Genetics, Genomics, Proteomics and Bioinformatics

How to Cite

Levy, B. 2005. Comparative genomic hybridization. Encyclopedia of Genetics, Genomics, Proteomics and Bioinformatics. 1:1.2:23.

Author Information

  1. Mount Sinai School of Medicine, New York, NY, USA

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 15 APR 2005


The notion of obtaining a cytogenetic result without actually looking at the patients' chromosomes would have been considered ridiculous more than 12 years ago. The development, in 1992, of comparative genomic hybridization (CGH) has allowed this to become a reality. CGH is a powerful technique that can scan the entire genome in a single step for imbalances in chromosomal material. It can be used as a tool to uncover novel critical cancer causing genes such as tumor suppressors and oncogenes in a variety of solid tumor specimens. CGH can also be used to identify unbalanced chromosomal aberrations of unknown origin in clinical specimens as well as to screen for total aneuploidy in clinical specimens not amenable to analysis by conventional cytogenetic methods. This chapter discusses the technique of CGH and describes its use as both a cancer research tool and a diagnostic technique in clinical cytogenetics.


  • comparative genomic hybridization;
  • aneuploidy;
  • DNA copy number;
  • chromosomal gains/losses;
  • molecular cytogenetics;
  • whole genome scan;
  • clinical cytogenetics;
  • cancer;
  • molecular cytogenetics;
  • duplications;
  • deletions;
  • amplification