any of various one-celled organisms, classified in the kingdom Protista, that are either free-living or aggregated into simple colonies and that have diverse reproductive and nutritional modes, including the protozoans, eukaryotic algae, and slime molds: some classification schemes also include the fungi and the more primitive bacteria or may distribute the organisms between the kingdoms Plantae and Animalia according to dominant characteristics.
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- pro·tis·tan [proh-tis-tuhn], /proʊˈtɪs tən/, adjective, noun
- pro·tis·tic [proh-tis-tik], /proʊˈtɪs tɪk/, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023
How to use protist in a sentence
Some of its members are more related to animals or plants than to other protists.What biologists call a species is becoming more than just a name | Jack J. Lee | October 14, 2021 | Science News For Students
He’s a contributor to Phylonyms and has written chapters about protists.What biologists call a species is becoming more than just a name | Jack J. Lee | October 14, 2021 | Science News For Students
The work includes also the few earlier observations of the “psychic life of the protist.”
British Dictionary definitions for protist
(in some classification systems) any organism belonging to the kingdom Protista, originally including bacteria, protozoans, algae, and fungi, regarded as distinct from plants and animals. It was later restricted to protozoans, unicellular algae, and simple fungi: See also protoctist
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
Scientific definitions for protist
Any of a large variety of usually one-celled organisms belonging to the kingdom Protista (or Protoctista). Protists are eukaryotes and live in water or in watery tissues of organisms. Some protists resemble plants in that they produce their own food by photosynthesis, while others resemble animals in consuming organic matter for food. Protist cells are often structurally much more elaborate than the cells of multicellular plants and animals. Protists include the protozoans, most algae, diatoms, oomycetes, and the slime molds. Also called protoctist See Table at taxonomy.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.