[in-ter-stish-uh l]


pertaining to, situated in, or forming interstices.
Anatomy. situated between the cells of a structure or part: interstitial tissue.


Crystallography. an imperfection in a crystal caused by the presence of an extra atom in an otherwise complete lattice.Compare vacancy(def 6).

Origin of interstitial

1640–50; < Latin interstiti(um) interstice + -al1
Related formsin·ter·sti·tial·ly, adverb Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

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British Dictionary definitions for interstitial



of or relating to an interstice or interstices
physics forming or occurring in an intersticean interstitial atom
chem containing interstitial atoms or ionsan interstitial compound
anatomy zoology occurring in the spaces between organs, tissues, etcinterstitial cells


chem an atom or ion situated in the interstices of a crystal lattice
Derived Formsinterstitially, adverb
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 interstitial

1640s, from Latin interstitium (see interstice) + -al (1). Related: Interstitially.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Medicine definitions for interstitial




Relating to or situated in the small, narrow spaces between tissues or parts of an organ.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.