bio·​cide | \ ˈbī-ə-ˌsīd How to pronounce biocide (audio) \

Definition of biocide

: a substance (such as an algicide or fungicide) that destroys or inhibits the growth or activity of living organisms Sodium azide is an explosive, broad-spectrum biocide with toxicity comparable to sodium cyanide's.— Science News

Examples of biocide in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Another target is to cut pollution from biocides, plastic wastes, and excess nutrients by at least 50%. Jessie Yeung, CNN, 14 Jan. 2020 Waterford masks contain a biocide that protects medical workers and other wearers from infectious diseases better than existing masks, which were designed more to safeguard patients than wearers, the company says. Joseph A. Mann Jr, miamiherald, 9 Mar. 2018 A class of biocides known as quaternary ammonium compounds, or quats, is one chemical treatment that temporarily diminishes biofilms and their visible effects. National Geographic, 21 Sep. 2016

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'biocide.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of biocide

1947, in the meaning defined above

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Time Traveler for biocide

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The first known use of biocide was in 1947

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Cite this Entry

“Biocide.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 21 Jan. 2022.

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More Definitions for biocide


bio·​cide | \ ˈbī-ə-ˌsīd How to pronounce biocide (audio) \

Medical Definition of biocide

: a substance (as glutaraldehyde) that is destructive to many different organisms

Other Words from biocide

biocidal \ ˌbī-​ə-​ˈsīd-​ᵊl How to pronounce biocide (audio) \ adjective


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