Definition of pluteus in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˈplo͞odēəs/

noun (plural plutei /-tēˌī/)

The planktonic larva of some echinoderms, being somewhat triangular with lateral projections.
Example sentences
  • Brittle stars also have pluteus larvae with skeletal spicules that resemble those of the urchin.
  • Another striking example of metamorphosis is the transformation of the pluteus stage larva of the sea urchin into the adult.


Late 19th century: from Latin, literally 'barrier' (with reference to its shape).

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: plu·te·us

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