[ myoo-teyt ]
/ ˈmyu teɪt /

verb (used with object), mu·tat·ed, mu·tat·ing.

to change; alter.
Phonetics. to change by umlaut.

verb (used without object), mu·tat·ed, mu·tat·ing.

to change; undergo mutation.

Nearby words

  1. mutant,
  2. mutant gene,
  3. mutare,
  4. mutarotation,
  5. mutase,
  6. mutation,
  7. mutation stop,
  8. mutations,
  9. mutatis mutandis,
  10. mutative

Origin of mutate

1810–20; < Latin mūtātus, past participle of mūtare to change; see -ate1

Related formsmu·ta·tive [myoo-tuh-tiv] /ˈmyu tə tɪv/, adjectivenon·mu·ta·tive, adjectiveun·mu·tat·ed, adjectiveun·mu·ta·tive, adjective Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for mutate

  • He said, "Then, any survivors on earth will have to mutate into something other than mankind?"

    Deepfreeze|Robert Donald Locke

British Dictionary definitions for mutate


/ (mjuːˈteɪt) /


to undergo or cause to undergo mutation
Derived Formsmutative (ˈmjuːtətɪv, mjuːˈteɪtɪv), adjective

Word Origin for mutate

C19: from Latin mūtātus changed, from mūtāre to change

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 mutate



"to change state or condition," 1818, back-formation from mutation. In genetic sense, 1913, from Latin mutatus, past participle of mutare "to change" (see mutable). Related: Mutated; mutating.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper