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bi·​ot·​ic bī-ˈä-tik How to pronounce biotic (audio)
: of, relating to, or caused by living organisms
biotic diversity


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adjective combining form

: having a (specified) mode of life

Examples of biotic in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web
These are all a set of models which emphasize the abiotic selective pressures on life forms, as opposed to the biotic ones. Razib Khan, Discover Magazine, 21 Apr. 2011 Abiotic plant disorders are environmental, and causes include wind, water, temperature, and soil pH. In comparison, biotic factors would include insects, mites, fungi, or bacteria. Miri Talabac, Baltimore Sun, 17 Mar. 2022 The abyssal plains are strewn with mineral nodules that coalesce around biotic seeds such as sharks' teeth, accumulating cobalt and other metals integral to lithium-ion batteries. Amy Brady, Scientific American, 20 June 2023 So the two classes of variables do influence each other, insofar as biotic dynamism surges in the wake of an abiotic perturbation. Razib Khan, Discover Magazine, 20 Apr. 2011 Environmental and biotic controls on the evolutionary history of insect body size. Ed Yong, Discover Magazine, 5 June 2012 But Runčevski and his colleagues found that on Titan, they are typically polarized mineral crystals and could serve as templates for the assembly of other organic compounds — a gathering with the potential to generate biotic matter. Cody Cottier, Discover Magazine, 22 Nov. 2021 Poppi is a carbonated canned drink infused with apple cider vinegar and fruit juices meant to provide a pre-biotic boost. Edward Medeles, Dallas News, 2 Sep. 2021 The biotic and abiotic elements that render Socotra so unique have existed and evolved there for millions of years, many remaining effectively unchanged in this time. Vogue, 17 Feb. 2023 See More

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

Word History



Greek biōtikos, from bioun

Adjective combining form

probably from New Latin -bioticus, from Greek biōtikos

First Known Use


1892, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of biotic was in 1892

Dictionary Entries Near biotic

Cite this Entry

“Biotic.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 2 Dec. 2023.

Kids Definition


bi·​ot·​ic bī-ˈät-ik How to pronounce biotic (audio)
: of, relating to, or caused by living things

Medical Definition


bi·​ot·​ic bī-ˈät-ik How to pronounce biotic (audio)
: of or relating to life
especially : caused or produced by living beings

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