• synonyms


[verb ih-noo-klee-eyt, ih-nyoo-; adjective ih-noo-klee-it, -eyt, ih-nyoo-]
See more synonyms for enucleate on Thesaurus.com
verb (used with object), e·nu·cle·at·ed, e·nu·cle·at·ing.
  1. Biology. to deprive of the nucleus.
  2. to remove (a kernel, tumor, eyeball, etc.) from its enveloping cover.
  3. Archaic. to bring out; disclose; explain.
Show More
  1. having no nucleus.
Show More

Origin of enucleate

1540–50; < Latin ēnucleātus (past participle of ēnucleāre to remove the pit from (fruit)), equivalent to ē- e-1 + nucle(us) nucleus + -ātus -ate1
Related formse·nu·cle·a·tion, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for enucleation

Historical Examples

  • Sessile cysts of this kind are removed by what is known as enucleation.

    A System of Operative Surgery, Volume IV (of 4)


  • The method is termed ‘enucleation’,43 and where it fails the extubator must be used.

  • Associated words: enucleate, enucleation, exacinate, exacination.

    Putnam's Word Book

    Louis A. Flemming

  • Associated words: scleroid, enucleate, enucleation, inenucleable.

    Putnam's Word Book

    Louis A. Flemming

  • When the enucleation is completed the walls of the capsule are carefully examined for oozing vessels which require ligature.

British Dictionary definitions for enucleation


verb (ɪˈnjuːklɪˌeɪt) (tr)
  1. biology to remove the nucleus from (a cell)
  2. surgery to remove (a tumour or other structure) from its capsule without rupturing it
  3. archaic to explain or disclose
Show More
adjective (ɪˈnjuːklɪɪt, -ˌeɪt)
  1. (of cells) deprived of their nuclei
Show More
Derived Formsenucleation, noun

Word Origin

C16: from Latin ēnūcleāre to remove the kernel, from nūcleus kernel
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 enucleation


1640s, from verb enucleate (1540s), from Latin enucleatus "pure, clean," past participle of enucleare "to lay open, explain in detail," literally "to remove the kernel of" (see ex- + nucleus). Mostly figurative in Latin (the notion is of getting at the "core" of some matter); until mid-19c. advances in science and medicine, usually figurative in English.

Show More
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

enucleation in Medicine


  1. To remove something, such as a tumor or an eye, whole and without rupture from an enveloping cover or sac.
  2. To remove the nucleus of a cell.
Show More
  1. Lacking a nucleus.
Show More
Related formse•nu′cle•ation n.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.