Definition of helicity in English:

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Pronunciation: /həˈlisədē/


1chiefly Biochemistry Helical character, especially of DNA.
Example sentences
  • The reason for the relatively low helicity of long peptides is unclear to us.
  • One peptide was designed to maximize helicity and the other, having the same composition but a different sequence, was designed to minimize helical formation.
  • Mechanistically, the expansion event begins with a slight loss of helicity in the stem region.
2 Physics A combination of the spin and the linear motion of a subatomic particle.
Example sentences
  • Linear equations can't easily capture magnetic field helicity, a property that prevents much of the field's energy from dissipating as heat.
  • One physicist later wrote that, had Maurice Goldhaber not existed, ‘I am not sure that the helicity of the neutrino would ever have been measured‘.


1950s (sense 2): from Latin helix, helic- 'spiral' + -ity.

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: he·li·ci·ty

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