We extend the edit operators of substitution, deletion, and insertion of a symbol over a word
by introducing two new operators (partial copy and partial elimination) inspired by biological
gene duplication. We de ne a disruption measure for an operator over a word and prove that
whereas the traditional edit operators are disruptive, partial copy and partial elimination are
non-disruptive. Moreover, we show that the application of only edit operators does not generate
(with low disruption) all the words over a binary alphabet, but this can indeed be done by
combining partial copy and partial elimination with the substitution operator.