Definition of plasmodium in English:

Share this entry


Pronunciation: /plazˈmōdēəm/

noun (plural plasmodia /-dēə/)

1A parasitic protozoan of a genus that includes those causing malaria.
  • Genus Plasmodium, phylum Sporozoa.
Example sentences
  • The genome of the malarial parasite - plasmodium falciparum was only completed two years ago.
  • Malaria is a serious illness transmitted by the ‘bite’ of the female Anopheles mosquito which has parasitic protozoa of the genus plasmodium falciparum, plasmodium malariae, plasmodium vivax.
  • Coluzzi's research indicates that the most serious type of malaria (known as plasmodium falciparum) reached Rome at about the time of Christ.
2 Biology A form within the life cycle of some simple organisms such as slime molds, typically consisting of a mass of naked protoplasm containing many nuclei.
Example sentences
  • The haploid myxamoebae act as isogametes; individuals of different mating types pair and fuse to form diploid zygotes that develop into macroscopic, diploid plasmodia after repeated mitotic cycles without cell division.
  • P. polycephalum is a protist that in the course of its life cycle forms multinuclear giant single cells, so-called plasmodia that can be grown to almost any desired size.
  • The life cycle of Physarum includes two distinct vegetative forms: the haploid amoeba and the diploid plasmodium.



Pronunciation: /-mōdēəl/
Example sentences
  • In fungi, plasmodial slime mold displays a diploid life history.
  • Note that the life cycle of the wild type usually is diploid and mating of two haploid amoebae then is a prerequisite for plasmodial development and allows genetic analyses.
  • This channel, the plasmodial erythrocyte surface anion channel, is present at 1000-2000 functional copies/cell and is absent from uninfected RBCs.


Late 19th century: modern Latin, based on late Latin plasma 'mold, formation'.

Words that rhyme with plasmodium

odeum, odium, podium, sodium

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: plas·mo·di·um

Share this entry

What do you find interesting about this word or phrase?

Comments that don't adhere to our Community Guidelines may be moderated or removed.