[ dih-jen-uh-rey-shuh n ]
/ dɪˌdʒɛn əˈreɪ ʃən /


the process of degenerating.
the condition or state of being degenerate.
  1. a process by which a tissue deteriorates, loses functional activity, and may become converted into or replaced by other kinds of tissue.
  2. the condition produced by such a process.

Origin of degeneration

First recorded in 1475–85, degeneration is from the Late Latin word dēgenerātiōn- (stem of dēgenerātiō). See de-, generation

Related forms

non·de·gen·er·a·tion, noun Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for degeneration

British Dictionary definitions for degeneration


/ (dɪˌdʒɛnəˈreɪʃən) /


the process of degenerating
the state of being degenerate
biology the loss of specialization, function, or structure by organisms and their parts, as in the development of vestigial organs
  1. impairment or loss of the function and structure of cells or tissues, as by disease or injury, often leading to death (necrosis) of the involved part
  2. the resulting condition
electronics negative feedback of a signal
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

Medicine definitions for degeneration


[ dĭ-jĕn′ə-rāshən ]


The gradual deterioration of specific tissues, cells, or organs with impairment or loss of function, caused by injury, disease, or aging.
The evolutionary decline or loss of a function, characteristic, or structure in an organism or a species.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.