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[es-truh-juh n] /ˈɛs trə dʒən/
noun, Biochemistry
any of several major female sex hormones produced primarily by the ovarian follicles of female mammals, capable of inducing estrus, developing and maintaining secondary female sex characteristics, and preparing the uterus for the reception of a fertilized egg: used, especially in synthetic form, as a component of oral contraceptives, in certain cancer treatments, and in other therapies.
Origin of estrogen
1925-30; estr(us) + -o- + -gen
Related forms
antiestrogen, noun Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for estrogen
  • There is a high level of variability and differential ratios in levels of estrogen and progesterones in birth control pills.
  • But it's going to do some things that estrogen doesn't do.
  • We got word this week that estrogen therapy, which was bad, is good again.
  • Such effects are more pronounced in females than males, as males start out with estrogen but lose the hormone as they develop.
  • The estrogen patch saved my sanity and returned my life to normal.
  • It is well known that the hormones estrogen and testosterone, produced in the ovaries and testes, help to regulate bone growth.
  • Since estrogen by itself can also increase the chance of uterine cancer, many doctors have switched their.
  • After treatment and an increase in weight, estrogen levels are usually restored and periods resume.
  • For decades, the standard therapy for hot flashes has been the hormone estrogen.
  • estrogen and progesterone start out at their lowest levels.
British Dictionary definitions for estrogen


/ˈɛstrədʒən; ˈiːstrə-/
the usual US spelling of oestrogen
Derived Forms
estrogenic (ˌɛstrəˈdʒɛnɪk; ˌiːstrə-) adjective
estrogenically, adverb


/ˈiːstrədʒən; ˈɛstrə-/
any of several steroid hormones, that are secreted chiefly by the ovaries and placenta, that induce oestrus, stimulate changes in the female reproductive organs during the oestrous cycle, and promote development of female secondary sexual characteristics
Derived Forms
oestrogenic (ˌiːstrəˈdʒɛnɪk; ˌɛstrə-), (US) estrogenic (ˌɛstrəˈdʒɛnɪk; ˌiːstrə-) adjective
oestrogenically, (US) estrogenically, adverb
Word Origin
C20: from oestrus + -gen
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for estrogen

coined 1927 from estrus + -gen. So called for the hormone's ability to produce estrus.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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estrogen in Medicine

estrogen es·tro·gen or oes·tro·gen (ěs'trə-jən)
Any of several natural or synthetic substances formed by the ovary, placenta, testis, and certain plants, that stimulate the female secondary sex characteristics, exert systemic effects such as the growth and maturation of long bones, and are used to treat disorders due to estrogen deficiency and to ameliorate cancers of the breast and prostate. Also called estrin.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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estrogen in Science
Any of a group of steroid hormones that primarily regulate the growth, development, and function of the female reproductive system. The main sources of estrogen in the body are the ovaries and the placenta. Estrogen-like compounds are also formed by certain plants.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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estrogen in Culture
estrogen [(es-truh-juhn)]

A group of hormones, secreted mainly by the ovaries, that influence the female reproductive system in many ways, notably in preparing the body for ovulation and in the development of female secondary sex characteristics.

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