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[verb ih-noo-klee-eyt, ih-nyoo-; adjective ih-noo-klee-it, -eyt, ih-nyoo-] /verb ɪˈnu kliˌeɪt, ɪˈnyu-; adjective ɪˈnu kli ɪt, -ˌeɪt, ɪˈnyu-/
verb (used with object), enucleated, enucleating.
Biology. to deprive of the nucleus.
to remove (a kernel, tumor, eyeball, etc.) from its enveloping cover.
Archaic. to bring out; disclose; explain.
having no nucleus.
Origin of enucleate
1540-50; < Latin ēnucleātus (past participle of ēnucleāre to remove the pit from (fruit)), equivalent to ē- e-1 + nucle(us) nucleus + -ātus -ate1
Related forms
enucleation, noun Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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British Dictionary definitions for enucleation


verb (transitive) (ɪˈnjuːklɪˌeɪt)
(biology) to remove the nucleus from (a cell)
(surgery) to remove (a tumour or other structure) from its capsule without rupturing it
(archaic) to explain or disclose
adjective (ɪˈnjuːklɪɪt; -ˌeɪt)
(of cells) deprived of their nuclei
Derived Forms
enucleation, noun
Word Origin
C16: from Latin ēnūcleāre to remove the kernel, from nūcleus kernel
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 enucleation

1640s, from verb enucleate (1540s), from Latin enucleatus "pure, clean," past participle of enucleare "to lay open, explain in detail," literally "to remove the kernel of" (see ex- + nucleus). Mostly figurative in Latin (the notion is of getting at the "core" of some matter); until mid-19c. advances in science and medicine, usually figurative in English.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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enucleation in Medicine

enucleate e·nu·cle·ate (ĭ-nōō'klē-āt', ĭ-nyōō'-)
v. e·nu·cle·at·ed, e·nu·cle·at·ing, e·nu·cle·ates

  1. To remove something, such as a tumor or an eye, whole and without rupture from an enveloping cover or sac.

  2. To remove the nucleus of a cell.

adj. (-ĭt, -āt')
Lacking a nucleus.
e·nu'cle·a'tion n.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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