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variant of plasmo- before a vowel: plasmapheresis.
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Other definitions for plasm- (2 of 2)


a combining form with the meanings “living substance,” “tissue,” “substance of a cell,” used in the formation of compound words: endoplasm; neoplasm; cytoplasm.

Origin of -plasm

Combining form representing Greek plásma.See plasma
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2022


What does -plasm mean?

The combining formplasm is used like a suffix meaning “living substance,” “tissue,” “substance of a cell.” It is very occasionally used in scientific terms, especially in biology.

The form –plasm comes from Greek plásma, meaning “something molded or formed.” Find out how plásma is related to plaster and plastic at our entries for both words.

What are variants of –plasm?

The form –plasm does not have any variants. However, it is related to the combining forms plasmo and plasm, as in plasmapheresis. Additional related forms include plasia, plasy, plastic, and plasty. To learn more, check out our Words That Use articles about these forms.

Examples of -plasm

One example of a term you may have encountered that features the form –plasm is cytoplasm, “the cell substance between the cell membrane and the nucleus.”

The form cyto means “cell,” from Greek kýtos. As we have seen, –plasm means “tissue.” Cytoplasm literally translates to “cell tissue.”

What are some words that use the combining form –plasm?

What are some other forms that –plasm may be commonly confused with?

Break it down!

The combining form phyto means “leaf.” With this in mind, what does phytoplasm literally mean?

How to use plasm- in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for plasm- (1 of 2)

/ (ˈplæzəm) /

protoplasm of a specified typegerm plasm
a variant of plasma

British Dictionary definitions for plasm- (2 of 2)


n combining form
(in biology) indicating the material forming cellsprotoplasm; cytoplasm

Derived forms of -plasm

-plasmic, adj combining form

Word Origin for -plasm

from Greek plasma something moulded; see plasma
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

Medical definitions for plasm- (1 of 3)

[ plăzəm ]

Germ plasm.

Medical definitions for plasm- (2 of 3)


Variant ofplasmo-

Medical definitions for plasm- (3 of 3)


Material forming cells or tissue:cytoplasm.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.