- capable of utilizing only organic materials as a source of food.
Origin of heterotrophic
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Examples from the Web for heterotrophic
Should the compound be inorganic, the term autotrophic is applied to the organism and heterotrophic if the compound is organic.The Fundamentals of Bacteriology
Charles Bradfield Morrey
- (of organisms, such as animals) obtaining carbon for growth and energy from complex organic compoundsCompare autotrophic
C20: from hetero- + Greek trophikos concerning food, from trophē nourishment
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
- An organism that cannot manufacture its own food and instead obtains its food and energy by taking in organic substances, usually plant or animal matter. All animals, protozoans, fungi, and most bacteria are heterotrophs. Compare autotroph.
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