ac·​i·​nus | \ ˈa-sə-nəs How to pronounce acinus (audio) \
plural acini\ ˈa-​sə-​ˌnī How to pronounce acinus (audio) \

Definition of acinus

: any of the small sacs terminating the ducts of some exocrine glands and lined with secretory cells

Other Words from acinus

acinous \ ˈa-​sə-​nəs How to pronounce acinus (audio) \ adjective

First Known Use of acinus

circa 1751, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for acinus

borrowed from New Latin (in the phrase glandulosi acini,) literally, "glandular berries," used by Marcello malpighi, going back to Latin, "berry, grape, berry or grape seed," probably of pre-Latin substratal origin

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about acinus

Time Traveler for acinus

Time Traveler

The first known use of acinus was circa 1751

See more words from the same year

Statistics for acinus

Cite this Entry

“Acinus.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 18 May. 2021.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for acinus


aci·​nus | \ ˈas-ə-nəs How to pronounce acinus (audio) , ə-ˈsī- How to pronounce acinus (audio) \
plural acini\ -​ˌnī How to pronounce acinus (audio) \

Medical Definition of acinus

: any of the small sacs or alveoli that terminate the ducts of some exocrine glands and are lined with secretory cells

More from Merriam-Webster on acinus Encyclopedia article about acinus

Comments on acinus

What made you want to look up acinus? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


Test Your Vocabulary

Words Used by Nabokov Quiz

  • image1676440788
  • Choose the best definition or synonym for the word in bold: "There are some eructations that sound like cheers—at least, mine did." Lolita
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!


Anagram puzzles meet word search.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!