Definition of syncytium in English:

Share this entry

syncytium

Pronunciation: /sɪnˈsɪtɪəm/

noun (plural syncytia /sɪnˈsɪtɪə/)

Biology
1A single cell or cytoplasmic mass containing several nuclei, formed by fusion of cells or by division of nuclei.
Example sentences
  • The maze experiments used the plasmodium phase of the mould, a multi-nucleate single cell, or syncytium.
  • In the early Drosophila embryo, the male and female pronuclei fuse and then undergo 13 rounds of synchronous mitoses without cell division to produce a syncytium.
  • Within 30 minutes, epidermal cells at the edge of the wound re-oriented and began to fuse, creating a syncytium, or cell with many nuclei, around the puncture.
1.1 Embryology A structure composed of syncytia, forming the outermost layer of the trophoblast.
Example sentences
  • That is, the muscle constitutes a functional syncytium.
  • Their cytoplasm consists of a giant, multinucleated tissue, the trabecular syncytium, which is connected via open and plugged cytoplasmic bridges to cells such as archaeocytes, choanoblasts, and cells with spherical inclusions.
  • Cardiac muscle fibers form a functional but not a protoplasmic syncytium.

Derivatives

syncytial

adjective
Example sentences
  • Respiratory syncytial virus, the commonest viral cause of pneumonia, may lead to severe disease, particularly in young children.
  • These ranged from mosaic embryos containing both cellularized and syncytial sectors to apparently normal late embryos and first instar larvae that were nonetheless unable to complete development.
  • It is important to consider the diagnosis of parainfluenza in patients who demonstrate histologic features of syncytial giant cell pneumonia, either alone or in combination with PAP, as early antiviral therapy may improve outcome.

Origin

Late 19th century: from syn- 'together' + -cyte 'cell' + -ium.

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: syn|cyt¦ium

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.