or in·hib·it·er

[ in-hib-i-ter ]
See synonyms for inhibitor on
  1. a person or thing that inhibits.

  2. Chemistry. a substance that decreases the rate of or stops completely a chemical reaction.

  1. any impurity in a mineral that prevents luminescence.: Compare activator (def. 3).

  2. Rocketry. an inert antioxidant used with solid propellants to inhibit burning on certain surfaces.

Origin of inhibitor

First recorded in 1865–70; inhibit + -or2

Words Nearby inhibitor Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use inhibitor in a sentence

  • The character in this case is an inhibitor of tail development.

  • Such birds being heterozygous for the inhibitor factor, should be whites showing some coloured "ticks."

    Mendelism | Reginald Crundall Punnett
  • Probably we ought to regard the beardless as a bearded wheat in which there is an inhibitor that stops the beard from growing.

    Mendelism | Reginald Crundall Punnett
  • The Silky is pure for the pigmentation factor, but does not contain the inhibitor factor.

    Mendelism | Reginald Crundall Punnett
  • On account of this weakness of the inhibitor in the germ-plasm of No. 117 that inhibitor is rarely fully activated.

British Dictionary definitions for inhibitor


/ (ɪnˈhɪbɪtə) /

  1. Also called: inhibiter a person or thing that inhibits

  2. Also called: anticatalyst a substance that retards or stops a chemical reaction: Compare catalyst

  1. biochem

    • a substance that inhibits the action of an enzyme

    • a substance that inhibits a metabolic or physiological process: a plant growth inhibitor

  2. any impurity in a solid that prevents luminescence

  3. an inert substance added to some rocket fuels to inhibit ignition on certain surfaces

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