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Euploidy vs. Aneuploidy: What's the Difference?

Edited by Janet White || By Harlon Moss || Updated on October 28, 2023
Euploidy is the presence of a complete set of chromosomes, while aneuploidy refers to an abnormal number, missing or extra chromosomes.

Key Differences

Euploidy represents cells with complete sets of chromosomes, essential for normal development. Aneuploidy, in contrast, involves cells with missing or extra chromosomes, leading to developmental issues.
In euploidy, chromosomes are present in exact multiples of the haploid number. Aneuploidy disrupts this balance, resulting in unbalanced genetic material.
Euploidy is typical in healthy organisms, maintaining genetic stability. Aneuploidy often causes genetic disorders, as seen in Down syndrome, due to extra chromosomes.
Polyploidy, a form of euploidy, involves more than two complete sets of chromosomes and is common in plants. Aneuploidy affects individual chromosomes and is generally detrimental in animals.
Euploidy supports normal physiological functions and traits. Aneuploidy can lead to miscarriages or congenital abnormalities due to chromosomal imbalance.

Comparison Chart

Chromosome Number

Complete sets of chromosomes.
Abnormal number, missing or extra chromosomes.


Common in healthy organisms.
Often associated with genetic disorders.


Can include polyploidy (extra sets).
Affects individual chromosomes.

Genetic Stability

Maintains genetic stability.
Leads to genetic imbalance.

Developmental Impact

Supports normal development.
Can cause developmental issues.

Euploidy and Aneuploidy Definitions


Euploidy means having complete chromosome sets.
The organism displayed euploidy, with all chromosomes in pairs.


Aneuploidy means an abnormal chromosome number.
The genetic test revealed aneuploidy in the fetus.


It is associated with genetic stability.
Euploidy in the cells ensured healthy development.


Often linked to genetic disorders.
The aneuploidy was responsible for the observed genetic condition.


Typical in healthy organisms.
The euploidy of the sample indicated a healthy genetic makeup.


It involves extra or missing chromosomes.
Aneuploidy was evident through the extra chromosome 21.


It refers to a normal chromosomal number.
Euploidy was confirmed in the karyotype analysis.


Can result in developmental issues.
The aneuploidy was associated with developmental delays.


Euploidy can include polyploidy in some species.
Certain plant species exhibit euploidy through polyploidy.


Causes genetic imbalance.
Aneuploidy in the karyotype led to chromosomal imbalance.


Having a chromosome number that is an exact multiple of the haploid number for the species.


Having a chromosome number that is not a multiple of the haploid number for the species.


A euploid organism or cell.


An aneuploid organism or cell.


(genetics) The condition of having a chromosome number that is an exact multiple of the haploid number for the species.


(genetics) The condition of being aneuploid; the state of possessing a chromosome number that is not an exact multiple of the haploid number of the organism in question.


An abnormality involving a chromosome number that is not an exact multiple of the haploid number (one chromosome set is incomplete)


What is euploidy?

Euploidy is the presence of complete sets of chromosomes.

What causes aneuploidy?

Aneuploidy is often caused by errors during cell division, like nondisjunction.

Is euploidy common in humans?

Yes, euploidy is common and necessary for normal human development.

What is aneuploidy?

Aneuploidy refers to an abnormal number of chromosomes, either missing or extra.

How does euploidy occur?

Euploidy occurs when cells have the correct multiple of the haploid number of chromosomes.

What is an example of euploidy?

A human cell with 46 chromosomes is an example of euploidy.

What is an example of aneuploidy?

Down syndrome, caused by an extra chromosome 21, is an example of aneuploidy.

Is aneuploidy more common in plants or animals?

Aneuploidy is generally more tolerated in plants than in animals.

Can aneuploidy affect pregnancy?

Yes, aneuploidy can lead to miscarriages or congenital abnormalities.

What is polyploidy in relation to euploidy?

Polyploidy is a type of euploidy where there are more than two sets of chromosomes.

Can euploidy be altered?

Euploidy is typically stable and not easily altered.

Can aneuploidy be inherited?

Some forms of aneuploidy can be inherited, but many occur spontaneously.

How is aneuploidy diagnosed?

Aneuploidy is diagnosed using genetic tests, like amniocentesis.

Does euploidy affect fertility?

Euploidy is essential for fertility and normal reproductive function.

Can euploidy occur in cancer cells?

Cancer cells often display aneuploidy rather than euploidy.

Does aneuploidy affect lifespan?

Depending on the type, aneuploidy can affect lifespan and quality of life.

Can lifestyle choices affect aneuploidy?

Some factors, like parental age, can increase the risk of aneuploidy.

Are euploid cells generally healthy?

Yes, euploid cells are generally healthy and function normally.

Does aneuploidy always cause health issues?

While often problematic, some forms of aneuploidy can be benign.

How is euploidy detected?

Euploidy can be confirmed through karyotyping or genetic testing.
About Author
Written by
Harlon Moss
Harlon is a seasoned quality moderator and accomplished content writer for Difference Wiki. An alumnus of the prestigious University of California, he earned his degree in Computer Science. Leveraging his academic background, Harlon brings a meticulous and informed perspective to his work, ensuring content accuracy and excellence.
Edited by
Janet White
Janet White has been an esteemed writer and blogger for Difference Wiki. Holding a Master's degree in Science and Medical Journalism from the prestigious Boston University, she has consistently demonstrated her expertise and passion for her field. When she's not immersed in her work, Janet relishes her time exercising, delving into a good book, and cherishing moments with friends and family.

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