[den-tn, -tin]
noun Dentistry.
the hard, calcareous tissue, similar to but denser than bone, that forms the major portion of a tooth, surrounds the pulp cavity, and is situated beneath the enamel and cementum. See diag. under tooth.
Also, dentine [den-teen] .

1830–40; dent- + -in2

dentinal, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
Cite This Source Link To dentin
World English Dictionary
dentine or dentin (ˈdɛntiːn, ˈdɛntɪn)
the calcified tissue surrounding the pulp cavity of a tooth and comprising the bulk of the tooth
[C19: from denti- + -in]
dentin or dentin
[C19: from denti- + -in]
'dentinal or dentin

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

also dentine, 1840s, from comb. form of L. dentem (nom. dens) "tooth" (see tooth) + chemical suffix -ine.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source
American Heritage
Medical Dictionary

dentin den·tin (děn'tĭn) or den·tine (-tēn')
The main, calcareous part of a tooth, beneath the enamel and surrounding the pulp chamber and root canals.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Cite This Source
American Heritage
Science Dictionary
dentin   (děn'tĭn)  Pronunciation Key 
The main bony part of a tooth beneath the enamel, surrounding the pulp chamber and root canals.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
Cite This Source
American Heritage
Cultural Dictionary

dentin definition

The hard, bony material beneath the enamel of a tooth. The bulk of a tooth is made up of dentin.

The American Heritage® New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
Cite This Source
Encyclopedia Britannica


in anatomy, the yellowish tissue that makes up the bulk of all teeth. It is harder than bone but softer than enamel and consists mainly of apatite crystals of calcium and phosphate. In humans, other mammals, and the elasmobranch fishes (e.g., sharks, rays), a layer of dentine-producing cells, odontoblasts, line the pulp cavity of the tooth (or, in the case of sharks, the toothlike scale) and send projections into the calcified material of the dentine; these projections are enclosed in tubules. Sensitivity to pain, pressure, and temperature is transmitted via the odontoblastic extensions in the tubules to and from the nerve in the pulp chamber. Secondary dentine, a less well-organized form of tubular dentine, is produced throughout life as a patching material where cavities have begun, where the overlying enamel has been worn away, and within the pulp chamber as part of the aging process.

Learn more about dentin with a free trial on

Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
Cite This Source
Example sentences
For now, the paste will be administered at dental offices for immediate relief of sensitivity and pain caused by exposed dentin.
Dentin dentin is the substance between enamel or cementum and the pulp chamber.
Image for dentin
Copyright © 2014, LLC. All rights reserved.
  • Please Login or Sign Up to use the Recent Searches feature