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or procaryote

[proh-kar-ee-oht, -ee-uh t] /proʊˈkær iˌoʊt, -i ət/
any cellular organism that has no nuclear membrane, no organelles in the cytoplasm except ribosomes, and has its genetic material in the form of single continuous strands forming coils or loops, characteristic of all organisms in the kingdom Monera, as the bacteria and blue-green algae.
Compare eukaryote.
Origin of prokaryote
taken as singular of New Latin Prokaryota, earlier Procaryotes (1925); see pro-1, eukaryote
Related forms
[proh-kar-ee-ot-ik] /proʊˌkær iˈɒt ɪk/ (Show IPA),
adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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British Dictionary definitions for prokaryotic


any organism having cells in each of which the genetic material is in a single DNA chain, not enclosed in a nucleus. Bacteria and archaeans are prokaryotes Compare eukaryote
Derived Forms
prokaryotic, procaryotic (prəʊˌkærɪˈɒtɪk) adjective
Word Origin
from pro-² + karyo- + -ote as in zygote
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 prokaryotic

1957, from prokaryote + -ic. Related: Prokaryon.



1963, from French procaryote (1925), from Greek pro- (see pro-) + karyon "nut, kernel" (see karyo-).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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prokaryotic in Medicine

prokaryote pro·kar·y·ote or pro·car·y·ote (prō-kār'ē-ōt')
An organism of the kingdom Prokaryotae, constituting the bacteria and cyanobacteria, characterized by the absence of a nuclear membrane and by DNA that is not organized into chromosomes.

pro·kar'y·ot'ic (-ŏt'ĭk) adj.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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prokaryotic in Science
Any of a wide variety of one-celled organisms of the kingdom Monera (or Prokaryota) that are the most primitive and ancient known forms of life. Prokaryotes lack a distinct cell nucleus and their DNA is not organized into chromosomes. They also lack the internal structures bound by membranes called organelles, such as mitochondria. At the molecular level, prokaryotes differ from eukaryotes in the structure of their lipids and of certain metabolic enzymes, and in how genes are expressed for protein synthesis. Prokaryotes reproduce asexually and include the bacteria and blue-green algae. Also called moneran. Compare eukaryote. See Table at taxonomy.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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