[ dee-ney-cher ]
/ diˈneɪ tʃər /

verb (used with object), de·na·tured, de·na·tur·ing.

to deprive (something) of its natural character, properties, etc.
to render (any of various alcohols) unfit for drinking by adding an unwholesome substance that does not alter usefulness for other purposes.
Biochemistry. to treat (a protein or the like) by chemical or physical means so as to alter its original state.
to make (fissionable material) unsuitable for use in an atomic weapon by mixing it with unfissionable material.

Nearby words

  1. denary,
  2. denasalize,
  3. denationalize,
  4. denaturalize,
  5. denaturation,
  6. denatured alcohol,
  7. denaturize,
  8. denazify,
  9. denbighshire,
  10. dench

Origin of denature

First recorded in 1675–85; de- + nature

Related formsde·na·tur·ant, nounde·na·tur·a·tion, noun Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

British Dictionary definitions for denaturant


denaturize or denaturise (diːˈneɪtʃəˌraɪz)

/ (diːˈneɪtʃə) /

verb (tr)

to change the nature of
to change (a protein) by chemical or physical means, such as the action of acid or heat, to cause loss of solubility, biological activity, etc
to render (something, such as ethanol) unfit for consumption by adding nauseous substances
to render (fissile material) unfit for use in nuclear weapons by addition of an isotope
Derived Formsdenaturant, noundenaturation, 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 denaturant



1878, in modern sense, from French dénaturer (Old French desnaturer "change the nature of; make unnatural"); see de- + nature. Earlier "to make unnatural" (1680s). Related: Denatured.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Medicine definitions for denaturant


[ dē-nāchər ]


To change the nature or natural qualities of.
To render unfit to eat or drink without destroying usefulness in other applications, especially adding methyl alcohol to ethyl alcohol.
To alter the chemical structure of a protein, as with heat, alkali, or acid, so that some of its original properties, especially its biological activity, are diminished or eliminated.
Related formsde•na′tur•ation n.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

Science definitions for denaturant


[ dē-nāchər ]

To cause the tertiary structure of a protein to unfold, as with heat, alkali, or acid, so that some of its original properties, especially its biological activity, are diminished or eliminated.
To cause the paired strands of DNA to separate into individual strands.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.