proliferate

[pruh-lif-uh-reyt]
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verb (used with or without object), pro·lif·er·at·ed, pro·lif·er·at·ing.
  1. to grow or produce by multiplication of parts, as in budding or cell division, or by procreation.
  2. to increase in number or spread rapidly and often excessively.

Origin of proliferate

First recorded in 1870–75; prolifer(ous) + -ate1
Related formspro·lif·er·a·tive, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018


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British Dictionary definitions for proliferate

proliferate

verb
  1. to grow or reproduce (new parts, cells, etc) rapidly
  2. to grow or increase or cause to grow or increase rapidly
Derived Formsproliferative, adjective

Word Origin for proliferate

C19: from Medieval Latin prōlifer having offspring, from Latin prōlēs offspring + ferre to bear
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 proliferate
v.

1857 as a term in biology; see proliferation. General sense from 1961. Related: Proliferated; proliferating.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

proliferate in Medicine

proliferate

[prə-lĭfə-rāt′]
v.
  1. To grow or multiply by rapidly producing new tissue, parts, cells, or offspring.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.