(Of a compound, especially a metal oxide or hydroxide) able to react both as a base and as an acid.
More example sentences
- Amino acids are amphoteric organic acids that are able to biochemically react with both acids or bases.
- Proteins can also be amphoteric compounds - a compound that can take on a negative or positive charge depending on the surrounding conditions.
- Finally, amphoteric detergents have either a positively or negatively charged ion, depending on the pH of the system they are incorporated into.
mid 19th century: from Greek amphoteros, comparative of amphō 'both', + -ic.
Definition of amphoteric in:
- The US English dictionary