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[sim-bee-ont, -bahy-] /ˈsɪm biˌɒnt, -baɪ-/
noun, Biology.
an organism living in a state of symbiosis.
Also, symbiote
[sim-bee-oht, -bahy-] /ˈsɪm biˌoʊt, -baɪ-/ (Show IPA)
Origin of symbiont
1885-90; < Greek symbiont- (stem of symbiṓn), present participle of symbioûn “to live together”; see symbiosis, onto-
Related forms
[sim-bee-on-tik, -bahy-] /ˌsɪm biˈɒn tɪk, -baɪ-/ (Show IPA),
adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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British Dictionary definitions for symbionts


an organism living in a state of symbiosis
Derived Forms
symbiontic, adjective
symbiontically, adverb
Word Origin
C19: from Greek sumbioun to live together, from bioun to live
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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symbionts in Science
symbiont (sĭm'bē-ŏnt', -bī-) or symbiote
  (sĭm'bē-ŏnt', -bī-)   
An organism in a symbiotic relationship. In cases in which a distinction is made between two interacting organisms, the symbiont is the smaller of the two and is always a beneficiary in the relationship, while the larger organism is the host and may or may not derive a benefit. See also host, parasite.

The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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