metabolism

[muh-tab-uh-liz-uhm]
noun
1.
Biology, Physiology. the sum of the physical and chemical processes in an organism by which its material substance is produced, maintained, and destroyed, and by which energy is made available. Compare anabolism, catabolism.
2.
any basic process of organic functioning or operating: changes in the country's economic metabolism.

Origin:
1875–80; < Greek metabol() change (meta- meta- + bolḗ a throw) + -ism

hypermetabolism, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
Cite This Source Link To metabolism
Collins
World English Dictionary
metabolism (mɪˈtæbəˌlɪzəm)
 
n
1.  anabolism basal metabolism See catabolism the sum total of the chemical processes that occur in living organisms, resulting in growth, production of energy, elimination of waste material, etc
2.  the sum total of the chemical processes affecting a particular substance in the body: carbohydrate metabolism; iodine metabolism
 
[C19: from Greek metabolē change, from metaballein to change, from meta- + ballein to throw]
 
metabolic
 
adj
 
meta'bolically
 
adv

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
Etymonline
Word Origin & History

metabolism
in physiology sense, 1878, from Fr. métabolisme, from Gk. metabole "change," from metaballein "to change," from meta- "over" + ballein "to throw" (see ballistics).
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source
American Heritage
Medical Dictionary

metabolism me·tab·o·lism (mĭ-tāb'ə-lĭz'əm)
n.

  1. The complex of physical and chemical processes occurring within a living cell or organism that are necessary for the maintenance of life. In metabolism some substances are broken down to yield energy for vital processes while other substances, necessary for life, are synthesized.

  2. The functioning of a specific substance, such as water, within the living body.

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
metabolism   (mĭ-tāb'ə-lĭz'əm)  Pronunciation Key 
The chemical processes by which cells produce the substances and energy needed to sustain life. As part of metabolism, organic compounds are broken down to provide heat and energy in the process called catabolism. Simpler molecules are also used to build more complex compounds like proteins for growth and repair of tissues as part of anabolism. Many metabolic processes are brought about by the action of enzymes. The overall speed at which an organism carries out its metabolic processes is termed its metabolic rate (or, when the organism is at rest, its basal metabolic rate). Birds, for example, have a high metabolic rate, since they are warm-blooded, and their usual method of locomotion, flight, requires large amounts of energy. Accordingly, birds usually need large amounts of high-quality, energy-rich foods such as seeds or meat, which they must eat frequently. See more at cellular respiration.

metabolic adjective (mět'ə-bŏl'ĭk)
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
Cite This Source
American Heritage
Cultural Dictionary
metabolism [(muh-tab-uh-liz-uhm)]

The total of the chemical reactions that maintain the life of a living thing.

Note: In humans, metabolism is related to the intake and use of food; persons with a high metabolism can eat more without gaining weight.
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
Example sentences
When this happens, one's resting metabolism is adversely affected.
The idea is to prevent unstable oxygen molecules, which are normal by-products
  of metabolism, from damaging cells.
Translocated herbicides must be absorbed by the plant, which they then kill by
  interfering with its metabolism.
Vitamin B12 is important for metabolism.
Copyright © 2014 Dictionary.com, LLC. All rights reserved.
  • Please Login or Sign Up to use the Recent Searches feature
FAVORITES
RECENT

;