Polymorphism or dimorphism may refer to:


  • Polymorphism (biology)
    Polymorphism (biology)
    Polymorphism in biology occurs when two or more clearly different phenotypes exist in the same population of a species — in other words, the occurrence of more than one form or morph...

    , including:
    • having multiple phenotype
      A phenotype is an organism's observable characteristics or traits: such as its morphology, development, biochemical or physiological properties, behavior, and products of behavior...

      s within a population; the switch that determines which phenotype an individual displays can be genetic or environmental
      • includes Sexual dimorphism
        Sexual dimorphism
        Sexual dimorphism is a phenotypic difference between males and females of the same species. Examples of such differences include differences in morphology, ornamentation, and behavior.-Examples:-Ornamentation / coloration:...

        , differences in the physiology of a species based only on sex
    • having multiple alleles of a gene within a population, usually expressing different phenotypes
  • Lipid polymorphism
    Lipid polymorphism
    Polymorphism in biophysics is the aspect of the behaviour of lipids that influences their long-range order, i.e. how they aggregate. This can be in the form of spheres of lipid molecules , pairs of layers that face one another , a tubular arrangement , or various cubic phases Polymorphism in...

    , the property of amphiphiles that gives rise to various aggregations of lipids
  • Nuclear dimorphism
    Nuclear dimorphism
    Nuclear dimorphism is a term referred to the special characteristic of having two different kinds of nuclei in a cell. This feature is observed in protozoa ciliates and some foraminifera. Ciliates contain two nucleus types: a macronucleus that is primarily used to control metabolism, and a...

    , when a cell's nuclear apparatus is composed of two structurally and functionally differentiated types of nuclei
  • Frond dimorphism
    Frond dimorphism
    Frond dimorphism refers to a difference in ferns between the fertile and sterile fronds. Since ferns, unlike flowering plants, bear spores on the leaf blade itself, this may affect the form of the frond itself...

    , differing forms of fern fronds between the sterile and fertile fronds


  • Polymorphism (computer science), allowing program code to work with various types
    • Polymorphism in object-oriented programming
      Polymorphism in object-oriented programming
      Subtype polymorphism, almost universally called just polymorphism in the context of object-oriented programming, is the ability to create a variable, a function, or an object that has more than one form. The word derives from the Greek "πολυμορφισμός" meaning "having multiple forms"...

      , the ability of an interface to be realized in multiple ways
  • Dialog polymorphism, changing the form of a computer dialog every time it is presented to a user, in order to prevent habituation
    Habituation can be defined as a process or as a procedure. As a process it is defined as a decrease in an elicited behavior resulting from the repeated presentation of an eliciting stimulus...

  • Polymorphic code
    Polymorphic code
    In computer terminology, polymorphic code is code that uses a polymorphic engine to mutate while keeping the original algorithm intact. That is, the code changes itself each time it runs, but the function of the code will not change at all...

    , self-modifying program code designed to defeat anti-virus programs or to defeat reverse engineers


  • Polymorphism (materials science)
    Polymorphism (materials science)
    Polymorphism in materials science is the ability of a solid material to exist in more than one form or crystal structure. Polymorphism can potentially be found in any crystalline material including polymers, minerals, and metals, and is related to allotropy, which refers to chemical elements...

    , the ability of a solid material to exist in more than one form or crystal structure
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