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[kroh-muh-tin] /ˈkroʊ mə tɪn/
noun, Cell Biology.
the readily stainable substance of a cell nucleus, consisting of DNA, RNA, and various proteins, that forms chromosomes during cell division.
Origin of chromatin
First recorded in 1880-85; chromat- + -in2
Related forms
chromatinic, adjective
chromatoid, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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British Dictionary definitions for chromatin


(cytology) the part of the nucleus that consists of DNA and proteins, forms the chromosomes, and stains with basic dyes See also euchromatin, heterochromatin
Derived Forms
chromatinic, adjective
chromatoid, adjective
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for chromatin

protoplasm in cell nuclei, 1882, from German, coined 1879 by German anatomist Walther Flemming (1843-1905), from Latinized form of Greek khromat-, the correct combinational form of khroma "color" (see chroma) + chemical suffix -in (2). Related: Chromatid. Cf. chromosome.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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chromatin in Medicine

chromatin chro·ma·tin (krō'mə-tĭn)
A complex of nucleic acids and proteins in the cell nucleus that stains readily with basic dyes and condenses to form chromosomes during cell division.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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chromatin in Science
The substance distributed in the nucleus of a cell that condenses to form chromosomes during cell division. It consists mainly of DNA and proteins called histones.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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