apoptosis

Cultural Dictionary
apoptosis [(ap-uhp-toh-sis)]

The programmed death of a cell. Scientists believe that this process is governed by chemical signals a given cell receives from its neighbors.

Note: It is thought some forms of cancer may result when this process of cell death is somehow interrupted, allowing cells to grow unchecked, with the result being a cancerous tumor.
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
Explore Dictionary.com
Previous Definition: apoptoses
Next Definition: apoptotic
Words Near: apoptosis
More from Thesaurus.com
Synonyms and Antonyms for apoptosis
More from Reference.com
Search for articles containing apoptosis
More from Dictionary.com Translator
Dictionary.com Word FAQs

Dictionary.com presents 366 FAQs, incorporating some of the frequently asked questions from the past with newer queries.

Copyright © 2014 Dictionary.com, LLC. All rights reserved.
  • Please Login or Sign Up to use the Recent Searches feature