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Molecular Terms: Considerations and Examples 


Harriet S. Meyer

Molecular terms often are more familiar in unexpanded form; their expansions may be obscure. Molecular terms often mix numbers, letters, and cases. They may be abbreviations or abbreviations within abbreviations (for instance, see TAF and subsequent entries in Table ). Molecular terms differ from standard abbreviations, which typically are uppercase initialisms (eg, premature ventricular contraction, PVC). In contrast, many molecular terms are (or incorporate) contractions of single words, using all lowercase letters or mixing capital and lowercase letters (eg, apo, apolipoprotein; Hb, hemoglobin). Letter prefixes (including Greek letters) and numeric prefixes are linked to the main term by hyphens.α1-antitrypsin β-catenin

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