afferent

1 of 2

adjective

af·​fer·​ent ˈa-fə-rənt How to pronounce afferent (audio)
-ˌfer-ənt,
-ˌfe-rənt
: bearing or conducting inward
specifically : conveying impulses toward the central nervous system compare efferent
afferently adverb

afferent

2 of 2

noun

: an afferent vessel (as a blood or lymphatic vessel) or nerve

Examples of afferent in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web
Adjective
Multiple sclerosis can cause optic nerve damage, which leads to an abnormal response of the pupils known as afferent pupillary defect (APD). Troy Bedinghaus, Od, Verywell Health, 17 July 2023
Noun
When a touch stimulates the C-tactile afferent, the body releases the hormone oxytocin, which regulates good moods. Anne Saker, The Enquirer, 15 Sep. 2020

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'afferent.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

Etymology

Adjective

borrowed from French afférent, borrowed from Latin afferent-, afferens, present participle of afferre "to bring along or with," from ad- ad- + ferre "to carry" — more at bear entry 2

Noun

derivative of afferent entry 1

First Known Use

Adjective

1828, in the meaning defined above

Noun

1949, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of afferent was in 1828

Dictionary Entries Near afferent

Cite this Entry

“Afferent.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/afferent. Accessed 24 Jul. 2024.

Kids Definition

afferent

adjective
af·​fer·​ent
ˈaf-ə-rənt,
ˈaf-ˌer-ənt
: bearing or conducting inward
especially : conveying impulses toward the central nervous system
afferently adverb

Medical Definition

afferent

1 of 2 adjective
af·​fer·​ent ˈaf-ə-rənt How to pronounce afferent (audio) -ˌer-ənt How to pronounce afferent (audio)
: bearing or conducting inward
specifically : conveying impulses toward the central nervous system compare efferent entry 1
afferently adverb

afferent

2 of 2 noun
: an afferent anatomical part (as a nerve)
the effect on the hypothalamus of afferents from the stomach
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