Definition of prokaryote in English:

Share this entry


Pronunciation: /prəʊˈkarɪəʊt/
Pronunciation: /prəʊˈkarɪɒt/
(also procaryote)


A microscopic single-celled organism which has neither a distinct nucleus with a membrane nor other specialized organelles, including the bacteria and cyanobacteria. Compare with eukaryote.
Example sentences
  • These proteins are expressed by all organisms ranging from prokaryotes to higher eukaryotes, including human cells.
  • In a few organisms called prokaryotes, there is no defined nucleus and the DNA is found throughout the cell.
  • The difference between eukaryotes and prokaryotes is that eukaryotes have a nucleus, while prokaryotes do not.



Pronunciation: /prəʊkarɪˈɒtɪk/
Example sentences
  • The structural integrity of recombinant products generated by prokaryotic and eukaryotic organisms is a major concern.
  • This is a region of highest conservation, which consists of amino acids that are identical in both the prokaryotic and eukaryotic homologs.
  • Several OYE homologues have been reported in prokaryotic and eukaryotic organisms.


1960s: from pro-2 'before' + Greek karuon 'nut, kernel' + -ote as in zygote.

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: pro|kary¦ote

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.