[toh-tip-uh-tuh nt]
adjective Biology.
  1. (of a cell or part) having the potential for developing in various specialized ways in response to external or internal stimuli.

Origin of totipotent

First recorded in 1895–1900; toti- + potent1
Related formsto·tip·o·ten·cy, noun Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

British Dictionary definitions for totipotent


  1. (of an animal cell) capable of differentiation and so forming a new individual, tissue, organ, etc
Derived Formstotipotency, noun

Word Origin for totipotent

C20: from Latin tōtus entire + potent 1
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 totipotent

1896, from Latin toti-, comb. form of totus "whole" (see total (adj.)) + potent. Perhaps immediately from German totipotent, which is attested by 1893. Related: Totipotency.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper