phagocytosis

[fag-uh-sahy-toh-sis]
noun
Physiology. the ingestion of a smaller cell or cell fragment, a microorganism, or foreign particles by means of the local infolding of a cell's membrane and the protrusion of its cytoplasm around the fold until the material has been surrounded and engulfed by closure of the membrane and formation of a vacuole: characteristic of amebas and some types of white blood cells.


Origin:
1890–95; phagocyte + -osis

Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
Cite This Source Link To phagocytosis
Collins
World English Dictionary
phagocytosis (ˌfæɡəsaɪˈtəʊsɪs)
 
n
the process by which a cell, such as a white blood cell, ingests microorganisms, other cells, and foreign particles

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
American Heritage
Medical Dictionary

phagocytosis phag·o·cy·to·sis (fāg'ə-sī-tō'sĭs)
n.
The engulfing and ingestion of bacteria or other foreign bodies by phagocytes.


phag'o·cy·tot'ic (-tŏt'ĭk) adj.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Cite This Source
Encyclopedia Britannica
Encyclopedia

phagocytosis

process by which certain living cells called phagocytes ingest or engulf other cells or particles. The phagocyte may be a free-living one-celled organism, such as an amoeba, or one of the body cells, such as a leukocyte (white blood cell). In some forms of animal life, such as amoebas and sponges, phagocytosis is a means of feeding; in higher animals phagocytosis is chiefly a defensive reaction against infection and invasion of the body by foreign substances (antigens).

Learn more about phagocytosis with a free trial on Britannica.com.

Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
Cite This Source
Example sentences
The immune system response also involves a process called phagocytosis.
Copyright © 2014 Dictionary.com, LLC. All rights reserved.
  • Please Login or Sign Up to use the Recent Searches feature
FAVORITES
RECENT

;