• synonyms


[pol-ee-mawr-fuh-noo-klee-er, -nyoo- or, by metathesis, -kyuh-ler]
adjective Cell Biology.
  1. (of a leukocyte) having a lobulate nucleus.
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Origin of polymorphonuclear

First recorded in 1895–1900; poly- + morpho- + nuclear

Pronunciation note

See nuclear.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for polymorphonuclear

Historical Examples

  • Polymorphonuclear leukocytosis, when present, is due to some complication.

    A Manual of Clinical Diagnosis

    James Campbell Todd

  • Polymorphonuclear leukocytosis may be either physiologic or pathologic.

  • It is less common, and is rarely so marked as a polymorphonuclear leukocytosis.

  • Polymorphonuclear neutrophiles and lymphocytes are relatively decreased.

  • The polymorphonuclear leucocytes are large cells, about 20µ; no definite granules can be observed.

British Dictionary definitions for polymorphonuclear


  1. (of a leucocyte) having a lobed or segmented nucleusSee also polymorph (def. 3)
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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

polymorphonuclear in Medicine


  1. Having a lobed nucleus. Used especially of neutrophilic white blood cells.
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The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.