Diploid is a cell or organism that has paired chromosomes, one from each parent. In humans, cells other than human sex cells, are diploid and have 23 pairs of chromosomes. Human sex cells (egg and sperm cells) contain a single set of chromosomes and are known as haploid.
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Diploid is the term that refers to the number of each type of chromosome that an organism has. And diploid specifically means every cell in that organism has two copies of each type of chromosome. So humans are diploid, and each human has, then, in the nucleus of their cells two copies of Chromosome 1, two of number two, two of number three, all the way out to two of number 22, and then if you're a female you have two copies of the X chromosome, if you're a male you have an X and a Y. So diploid means you have two of each type of chromosome.
Joan E. Bailey-Wilson, Ph.D.
Co-chief and Senior Investigator, Inherited Disease Research Branch; Head, Statistical Genetics Section
Dr. Bailey-Wilson develops new statistical methods and software and performs analyses that guide other genome scientists hunting for disease-associated genes. Trained in statistical genetics, she is interested in understanding the genetics of complex diseases and developing novel methodologies that can be used to disentangle the roles that genes and environment play in causing disease. Collaborating with other researchers, Dr. Bailey-Wilson studies a range of diseases, including lung cancer, prostate cancer, breast cancer, myopia and other eye diseases, and cleft lip and palate.