[ kon-juh-gey-shuhn ]
/ ˌkɒn dʒəˈgeɪ ʃən /


  1. the inflection of verbs.
  2. the whole set of inflected forms of a verb or the recital or display thereof in a fixed order: The conjugation of the Latin verb amo begins amō, amas, amat.
  3. a class of verbs having similar sets of inflected forms: the Latin second conjugation.
an act of joining: a conjugation of related ideas.
the state of being joined together; union; conjunction.
  1. the reproductive process in ciliate protozoans in which two organisms of different mating types exchange nuclear material through a temporary area of fusion.
  2. temporary union or permanent fusion as a form of sexual reproduction in certain algae and fungi, the male gametes of one organism uniting with female gametes of the other.
  3. a temporary union of two bacteria, in Escherichia and related groups, in which genetic material is transferred by migration of a plasmid, either solitary or as part of a chromosome, from one bacterium, the donor, to the other, the recipient; sometimes also including the transfer of resistance to antibiotics.



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Origin of conjugation

1400–50; late Middle English conjugacion (<Anglo-French ) <Late Latin conjugātiōn- (stem of conjugātiō), equivalent to conjugāt(us) (see conjugate) + -iōn--ion

OTHER WORDS FROM conjugation

con·ju·ga·tion·al, adjectivecon·ju·ga·tion·al·ly, adverbnon·con·ju·ga·tion, noun Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2020

Example sentences from the Web for conjugation

British Dictionary definitions for conjugation

/ (ˌkɒndʒʊˈɡeɪʃən) /


Derived forms of conjugation

conjugational, adjectiveconjugationally, adverb
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 conjugation

[ kŏn′jə-gāshən ]


The temporary union of two bacterial cells during which one cell transfers part or all of its genome to the other.
A process of sexual reproduction in which ciliate protozoans of the same species temporarily couple and exchange genetic material.
A process of sexual reproduction in certain algae and fungi in which temporary or permanent fusion occurs, resulting in the union of the male and female gametes.
The addition of glucuronic or sulfuric acid to certain toxic substances to terminate their biological activity and prepare them for excretion.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

Scientific definitions for conjugation

[ kŏn′jə-gāshən ]

A type of sexual reproduction in single-celled organisms, such as bacteria and some algae and fungi, in which two organisms or cells from the same species join together to exchange genetic material before undergoing cell division.
The fusion of two gametes to form a zygote, as in some algae and fungi.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.