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white matter

noun, Anatomy
1.
nerve tissue, especially of the brain and spinal cord, which primarily contains myelinated fibers and is nearly white in color.
Compare gray matter (def 1).
Origin
1830-1840
1830-40
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples from the web for white matter
  • Scientists have suspected for more than two decades that schizophrenia is linked to defects in the brain's white matter.
  • Brain scans show that as people get older, the white matter typically degenerates.
  • They found that the white matter in the prefrontal cortex of chimpanzees does not grow as rapidly as it does in humans.
  • The white matter in the foremost frontal lobes, the so-called prefrontal areas, had been disrupted on both sides of the brain.
  • These myelin-coated tracts make up the brain's white matter, while the bodies of neural cells are called grey matter.
British Dictionary definitions for white matter

white matter

noun
1.
the whitish tissue of the brain and spinal cord, consisting mainly of myelinated nerve fibres Technical name substantia alba Compare grey matter
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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white matter in Medicine

white matter n.
Whitish nerve tissue, especially of the brain and spinal cord, chiefly composed of myelinated nerve fibers and containing few or no neuronal cell bodies or dendrites. Also called alba, substantia alba, white substance.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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white matter in Science
white matter  
The whitish tissue of the vertebrate brain and spinal cord, made up chiefly of nerve fibers (axons) covered in myelin sheaths. Compare gray matter.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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