sterilize

[ster-uh-lahyz]
verb (used with object), sterilized, sterilizing.
1.
to destroy microorganisms in or on, usually by bringing to a high temperature with steam, dry heat, or boiling liquid.
2.
to destroy the ability of (a person or animal) to reproduce by removing the sex organs or inhibiting their functions.
3.
to make (land) barren or unproductive.
4.
Informal. to delete or remove anything comprising or damaging from: to sterilize a government document before releasing it to the press.
5.
Informal. to isolate or completely protect from unwanted, unauthorized, or unwholesome activities, attitudes, influences, etc.: You can't sterilize children against violence.
Also, especially British, sterilise.


Origin:
1685–95; sterile + -ize

sterilizable, adjective
sterilizability, noun
sterilizer, noun
presterilize, verb (used with object), presterilized, presterilizing.
resterilize, verb (used with object), resterilized, resterilizing.
self-sterilized, adjective
unsterilized, adjective

impotence, sterility, sterilized.
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World English Dictionary
sterilize or sterilise (ˈstɛrɪˌlaɪz)
 
vb
(tr) to render sterile; make infertile or barren
 
sterilise or sterilise
 
vb
 
'sterilizable or sterilise
 
adj
 
'sterilisable or sterilise
 
adj

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
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Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
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American Heritage
Medical Dictionary

sterilize ster·il·ize (stěr'ə-līz')
v. ster·il·ized, ster·il·iz·ing, ster·il·iz·es

  1. To make free from live bacteria or other microorganisms.

  2. To deprive a person or an animal of the ability to produce offspring, as by removing the reproductive organs.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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Example sentences
Even professor folks don't realize that over half of all tattoo parlors don't
  sterilize their equipment and reuse needles.
The method the team used to sterilize the males is too time-consuming for
  large-scale use in the field.
Sterilize her, so nothing competes for your living space.
During the last decade, they have come into use to sterilize some medical
  instruments.
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