• synonyms


[gang-glee-uh n]
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noun, plural gan·gli·a [gang-glee-uh] /ˈgæŋ gli ə/, gan·gli·ons.
  1. Anatomy.
    1. a mass of nerve tissue existing outside the central nervous system.
    2. any of certain masses of gray matter in the brain, as the basal ganglia.
  2. Pathology. a cyst or enlargement in connection with the sheath of a tendon, usually at the wrist.
  3. a center of intellectual or industrial force, activity, etc.
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Origin of ganglion

1675–85; < Late Latin: a type of swelling < Greek gánglion a tumor under the skin, on or near a tendon
Related formsgan·gli·al, gan·gli·ar, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

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British Dictionary definitions for ganglion


noun plural -glia (-ɡlɪə) or -glions
  1. an encapsulated collection of nerve-cell bodies, usually located outside the brain and spinal cord
  2. any concentration of energy, activity, or strength
  3. a cystic tumour on a tendon sheath or joint capsule
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Derived Formsganglial or gangliar, adjectiveganglionic or gangliated, adjective

Word Origin

C17: from Late Latin: swelling, from Greek: cystic tumour
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 ganglion


1680s, from Greek ganglion "tumor," used by Galen for "nerve bundle." Of unknown origin; according to Galen, the proper sense of the word was "anything gathered into a ball."

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

ganglion in Medicine


n. pl. gan•gli•ons
  1. A group of nerve cells forming a nerve center, especially one located outside the brain or spinal cord.neuroganglion
  2. A benign tumorlike cyst containing mucopolysaccharide-rich fluid enclosed within fibrous tissue and usually attached to a tendon sheath in the hand, wrist, or foot.myxoid cyst synovial cyst
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Related formsgangli•al adj.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

ganglion in Science


Plural ganglia
  1. A compact group of neurons enclosed by connective tissue and having a specific function. In invertebrate animals, pairs of ganglia occur at intervals along the axis of the body, with the forwardmost pair functioning like a brain. In vertebrates, ganglia are usually located outside the brain or spinal cord, where they regulate the functioning of the body's organs and glands as part of the autonomic nervous system.
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The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.