nematocyst

Science Dictionary
nematocyst   (něm'ə-tə-sĭst', nĭ-māt'ə-sĭst')  Pronunciation Key 
One of the minute capsules in the tentacles of cnidarians, such as jellyfish, hydras, or sea anemones, used for stinging. The capsule is produced by a special cell (called a cnidoblast) and contains a tightly coiled barbed thread that quickly shoots forth if the capsule's lid is disturbed. The thread often contains poison.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
Cite This Source
Explore Dictionary.com
Previous Definition: nektonic
Next Definition: nematocystic
Words Near: nematocyst
More from Thesaurus.com
Synonyms and Antonyms for nematocyst
More from Reference.com
Search for articles containing nematocyst
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