Biochemistry. any of various organic or inorganic substances necessary to the function of an enzyme.
a prefactor or postfactor.
the product of the minor of a given element of a matrix times −1 raised to the power of the sum of the indices of the row and column crossed out in forming the minor.

1935–40; co- + factor Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
cofactor (ˈkəʊˌfæktə)
1.  maths See minor a number associated with an element in a square matrix, equal to the determinant of the matrix formed by removing the row and column in which the element appears from the given determinant
2.  biochem a nonprotein substance that forms a complex with certain enzymes and is essential for their activity. It may be a metal ion or a coenzyme

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American Heritage
Medical Dictionary

cofactor co·fac·tor (kō'fāk'tər)
A substance, such as a metallic iron or coenzyme, that must be associated with an enzyme for the substance to function.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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American Heritage
Science Dictionary
cofactor   (kō'fāk'tər)  Pronunciation Key 
A substance, such as a metallic ion or a coenzyme, that must be associated with an enzyme for the enzyme to function. Cofactors work by changing the shape of an enzyme or by actually participating in the enzymatic reaction.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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