cross linkingmedical dictionary

1. <chemistry> The linking of the chains of a polymer to one another so that the polymer, as a network, becomes stronger and more resistant to being dissolved.

2. <molecular biology> The abnormal linking of two strands of DNA by covalent bonds (as opposed to the normal hydrogen bonds between base pairs), which can occur by exposure to X-rays. Such linking is a type of damage to the DNA molecule and must be repaired before the DNA can replicate and function properly again.

(09 Oct 1997)