Translocation means a change in location. It usually refers to genetic translocations, in which part of a chromosome is transferred to another chromosome. This type of translocation results in changed and often flawed chromosomes. In another type of translocation, two chromosomes will trade pieces with each other.
Genetic translocations can cause serious disorders, including a type of chronic myelogenous leukemia
Perkins JA. Diseases of white blood cells, lymph nodes, spleen, and thymus. In: Kumar V, Abbas AK, Fausto N, Aster JC, eds. Robbins and Cotran Pathologic Basis of Disease. 8th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Saunders Elsevier; 2009:chap 13.
Linda J. Vorvick, MD, Medical Director and Director of Didactic Curriculum, MEDEX Northwest Division of Physician Assistant Studies, Department of Family Medicine, UW Medicine, School of Medicine, University of Washington. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Bethanne Black, and the A.D.A.M. Editorial team.