autotrophic

adjective

au·​to·​tro·​phic ˌȯ-tə-ˈtrō-fik How to pronounce autotrophic (audio)
1
: requiring only carbon dioxide or carbonates as a source of carbon and a simple inorganic nitrogen compound for metabolic synthesis of organic molecules (such as glucose)
autotrophic plants
compare heterotrophic
2
: not requiring a specified exogenous factor for normal metabolism
autotrophically adverb
autotrophy noun

Examples of autotrophic in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Hessen points to a few findings that support the idea of autotrophic, phosphorous-limited organisms re-allocating their resources to RNA in order to bolster growth. Jeffrey Marlow, Discover Magazine, 4 Jan. 2017

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'autotrophic.' 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

auto- + -trophic, after German autotroph

First Known Use

1893, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of autotrophic was in 1893

Dictionary Entries Near autotrophic

Cite this Entry

“Autotrophic.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/autotrophic. Accessed 27 May. 2024.

Medical Definition

autotrophic

adjective
au·​to·​tro·​phic ˌȯt-ə-ˈtrō-fik How to pronounce autotrophic (audio)
1
: needing only carbon dioxide or carbonates as a source of carbon and a simple inorganic nitrogen compound for metabolic synthesis
2
: not requiring a specified exogenous factor for normal metabolism
autotrophically adverb

More from Merriam-Webster on autotrophic

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