[ pol-ee-sak-uh-rahyd, -rid ]
/ ˌpɒl iˈsæk əˌraɪd, -rɪd /
Save This Word!

noun Chemistry.
a carbohydrate, as starch, inulin, or cellulose, containing more than three monosaccharide units per molecule, the units being attached to each other in the manner of acetals, and therefore capable of hydrolysis by acids or enzymes to monosaccharides.


Click for a side-by-side comparison of meanings. Use the word comparison feature to learn the differences between similar and commonly confused words.
Apostrophes can be tricky; prove you know the difference between "it’s" and "its" in this crafty quiz!
Question 1 of 8
On the farm, the feed for chicks is significantly different from the roosters’; ______ not even comparable.
Also pol·y·sac·cha·rose [pol-ee-sak-uh-rohs]. /ˌpɒl iˈsæk əˌroʊs/.

Origin of polysaccharide

First recorded in 1890–95; poly- + saccharide
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2022

How to use polysaccharide in a sentence

  • It is a constituent of sucrose, of raffinose, and of the polysaccharide inulin, from which it may be obtained by hydrolysis.

    The Chemistry of Plant Life|Roscoe Wilfred Thatcher

British Dictionary definitions for polysaccharide


polysaccharose (ˌpɒlɪˈsækəˌrəʊz, -ˌrəʊs)

/ (ˌpɒlɪˈsækəˌraɪd, -rɪd) /

any one of a class of carbohydrates whose molecules contain linked monosaccharide units: includes starch, inulin, and cellulose. General formula: (C 6 H 10 O 5) nSee also oligosaccharide
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

Medical definitions for polysaccharide

[ pŏl′ē-săkə-rīd′ ]

Any of a class of carbohydrates, such as starch and cellulose, consisting of a number of monosaccharides joined by glycosidic bonds.glycan
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

Scientific definitions for polysaccharide

[ pŏl′ē-săkə-rīd′ ]

Any of a class of carbohydrates that are made of long chains of simple carbohydrates (called monosaccharides). Starch and cellulose are polysaccharides. Compare monosaccharide oligosaccharide.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.