Definition of pellagra in English:

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Pronunciation: /pɛˈlaɡrə/
Pronunciation: /pɛˈleɪɡrə/


[mass noun]
A deficiency disease caused by a lack of nicotinic acid or its precursor tryptophan in the diet. It is characterized by dermatitis, diarrhoea, and mental disturbance, and is often linked to over-dependence on maize as a staple food.
Example sentences
  • Those highly dependent on corn as a food might develop pellagra and this chronic disease, causing dermatitis, diarrhea, and ultimately dementia, battered the population of European corn growing regions during the nineteenth century.
  • Deficiency leads to pellagra, a condition characterized by dermatitis, diarrhea and certain mental health problems.
  • The troops suffered from malaria, dengue fever, beriberi, hookworm and pellagra.



Pronunciation: /pɛˈlaɡrəs/
Pronunciation: /pɛˈleɪɡrəs/
Example sentences
  • Why must they suffer these unsightly pellagrous lesions, and all the accompanying discomforts?


Early 19th century: from Italian, from pelle 'skin', on the pattern of podagra.

Words that rhyme with pellagra

Niagara, Viagra

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: pel|lagra

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