germplasm

noun
germ·​plasm | \ ˈjərm-ˌpla-zəm How to pronounce germplasm (audio) \
variants: or less commonly germ plasm

Definition of germplasm

1a : germ cells and their precursors serving as the bearers of heredity
b : the genetic material of germ cells : genes There is now a global effort to conserve the genetic material, or germplasm, of important crops.— Omar Sattaur The extraordinary precision and reliability of the replication of the germ plasm during each nuclear division …— Ernst Mayr
2 : plant or animal material (such as seeds, pollen, rootstock, or sperm) that is collected and stored chiefly for future use in breeding, conservation, or research The first U.S. facility for long-term preservation of crop germplasm, the National Seed Storage Laboratory at Fort Collins, CO, began storing collections of all major crops in 1958.— Nigel J. H. Smith Well-managed collections of germ plasm will give plant breeders a broader genetic base for producing new crops with greater resistance to pests, diseases and drought.— John P. Reganold et al.

Examples of germplasm in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web If species die out before their germplasm can be preserved, their promise will be lost for good. Maryn Mckenna, The Atlantic, 16 Sep. 2020 Semen samples were also taken from the bulls and sent to the germplasm bank in Colorado. Maureen O'hagan, Scientific American, 20 June 2019 Semen samples were also taken from the bulls and sent to the germplasm bank in Colorado. Maureen O'hagan, Scientific American, 20 June 2019 Semen samples were also taken from the bulls and sent to the germplasm bank in Colorado. Maureen O'hagan, Scientific American, 20 June 2019 Semen samples were also taken from the bulls and sent to the germplasm bank in Colorado. Maureen O'hagan, Scientific American, 20 June 2019 Semen samples were also taken from the bulls and sent to the germplasm bank in Colorado. Maureen O'hagan, Scientific American, 20 June 2019 For decades, Driscoll’s has been working with the germplasm of the White Carolina, the oldest strawberry cultivar. Dana Goodyear, The New Yorker, 11 Aug. 2019 Semen samples were also taken from the bulls and sent to the germplasm bank in Colorado. Maureen O'hagan, Scientific American, 20 June 2019 See More

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

First Known Use of germplasm

1885, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Learn More About germplasm

Time Traveler for germplasm

Time Traveler

The first known use of germplasm was in 1885

See more words from the same year

Dictionary Entries Near germplasm

germ peg

germplasm

germ pore

See More Nearby Entries 

Statistics for germplasm

Cite this Entry

“Germplasm.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/germplasm. Accessed 4 Jul. 2022.

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

More Definitions for germplasm

germplasm

noun
germ·​plasm | \ ˈjərm-ˌpla-zəm How to pronounce germplasm (audio) \
variants: also germ plasm

Medical Definition of germplasm

1a : germ cells and their precursors serving as the bearers of heredity
b : the genetic material of germ cells : genes
2 : plant or animal material (as seeds, pollen, or sperm) that is collected and stored chiefly for future use in breeding, conservation, or research

WORD OF THE DAY

Test Your Vocabulary

Great Words for Scrabble

  • scrabble tiles that read scrabble quiz
  • Which of the following Q-without-U words means the number five in cards or dice?
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

TAKE THE QUIZ
Universal Daily Crossword

A daily challenge for crossword fanatics.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

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