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Diploid describes a cell that contain two copies of each chromosome. Nearly all the cells in the human body carry two homologous, or similar, copies of each chromosome. The only exception is cells in the germ line, which go on to produce gametes, or egg and sperm cells. Germ line cells are haploid, which means they contain a single set of chromosomes. In diploid cells, one set of chromosomes is inherited from the individual’s mother, while the second is inherited from the father. Humans have 46 chromosomes in each diploid cell. Among those, there are two sex-determining chromosomes, and 22 pairs of autosomal, or non-sex, chromosomes. The total number of chromosomes in diploid cells is described as 2n, which is twice the number of chromosomes in a haploid cell (n).
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