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See more synonyms for cytology on Thesaurus.com
  1. the study of the microscopic appearance of cells, especially for the diagnosis of abnormalities and malignancies.
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Origin of cytology

First recorded in 1885–90; cyto- + -logy
Related formscy·to·log·ic [sahyt-l-oj-ik] /ˌsaɪt lˈɒdʒ ɪk/, cy·to·log·i·cal, adjectivecy·to·log·i·cal·ly, adverbcy·tol·o·gist, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words


Examples from the Web for cytology

Historical Examples

  • My aim is to describe the present position of our knowledge of Cytology.

    Darwin and Modern Science

    A.C. Seward and Others

  • And yet, in spite of this fact, there are few fields of scientific work possessing more general interest than that of cytology.

  • In discussing these species the reader may be referred to Professor Harper's study of cytology, Bot.

    The North American Slime-Moulds

    Thomas H. (Thomas Huston) MacBride

  • The cytology of the fat body of the common roach, Blatella germanica, with emphasis on intracytoplasmic inclusion bodies.

  • By genetic experiment, cytology and physiological chemistry aiding, we may hope to acquire such knowledge.

British Dictionary definitions for cytology


  1. the study of plant and animal cells, including their structure, function, and formation
  2. the detailed structure of a tissue, as revealed by microscopic examination
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Derived Formscytological (ˌsaɪtəˈlɒdʒɪkəl), adjectivecytologically, adverbcytologist, noun
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

Word Origin and History for cytology


1857, from cyto- + -logy. Related: Cytologist (1884).

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

cytology in Medicine


  1. The branch of biology that deals with the formation, structure, and function of cells.
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Related formscy′to•logic (-tə-lŏjĭk) adj.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

cytology in Science


  1. The scientific study of the formation, structure, and function of cells.
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The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.