a combining form meaning “life” occurring in loanwords from Greek (biography ); on this model, used in the formation of compound words (bioluminescence ).
Also, especially before a vowel, bi-.

combining form of Greek bíos life; akin to Latin vīvus living, Sanskrit jīvas. See quick Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
bio- or (before a vowel) bi-
combining form
1.  indicating or involving life or living organisms: biogenesis; biolysis
2.  indicating a human life or career: biography; biopic
[from Greek bios life]
bi- or (before a vowel) bi-
combining form
[from Greek bios life]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
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Word Origin & History

from Gk. bio-, comb. form of bios "one's life, course or way of living, lifetime" (as opposed to zoe "animal life, organic life"), from PIE base *gweie- "to live" (cf. Skt. jivah "alive, living;" O.E. cwic "alive;" L. vivus "living, alive," vita "life;" M.Pers. zhiwak "alive;" O.C.S. zivo "to live;"
Lith. gyvas "living, alive;" O.Ir. bethu "life," bith "age;" Welsh byd "world"). Equivalent of L. vita. The correct usage is that in biography, but in modern science it has been extended to mean "organic life."
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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American Heritage
Medical Dictionary

bio- or bi-

  1. Life; living organism: biology.

  2. Biology; biological: biophysics.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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