[ skwey-leen ]
/ ˈskweɪ lin /

noun Biochemistry.

an oil, C30H50, intermediate in the synthesis of cholesterol, obtained for use in manufacturing pharmaceuticals.

Nearby words

  1. squaddie,
  2. squadoosh,
  3. squadron,
  4. squadron leader,
  5. squadsman,
  6. squalid,
  7. squalidity,
  8. squalidly,
  9. squall,
  10. squall line

Origin of squalene

1925–30; < New Latin Squal(us) name of a genus of sharks (the liver of which yields the oil), Latin: a kind of fish + -ene

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

British Dictionary definitions for squalene


/ (ˈskweɪˌliːn) /


biochem a terpene first found in the liver of sharks but also present in the livers of most higher animals: an important precursor of cholesterol

Word Origin for squalene

C20: from New Latin squalus genus name of the shark

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

Science definitions for squalene


[ skwālēn′ ]

A colorless, unsaturated hydrocarbon found especially in the liver oil of sharks and in human sebum. It is an intermediate compound in the body's synthesis of cholesterol. Chemical formula: C30H50.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.