metabolism

noun
me·​tab·​o·​lism | \ mə-ˈta-bə-ˌli-zəm How to pronounce metabolism (audio) \

Definition of metabolism

1a : the sum of the processes in the buildup and destruction of protoplasm specifically : the chemical changes in living cells by which energy is provided for vital processes and activities and new material is assimilated (see assimilate entry 1 sense 1b) Regular exercise can help to increase your metabolism.
b : the sum of the processes by which a particular substance is handled in the living body
c : the sum of the metabolic activities taking place in a particular environment the metabolism of a lake
2 : metamorphosis sense 2 usually used in combination holometabolism

Examples of metabolism in a Sentence

studying the metabolisms of various organisms
Recent Examples on the Web And as genetics and molecular biology revolutionized cancer research in the 1960s, his stubborn focus on metabolism looked outdated. Sam Kean, WSJ, 15 June 2021 Sleep affects metabolism pervasively in the body, suggesting that its influence is not exclusively neurological. Quanta Magazine, 18 May 2021 The sloth’s metabolism is its silver bullet—and Egerstedt wanted to build a machine that could mimic this energy efficiency. Courtney Linder, Popular Mechanics, 16 May 2021 Cybernetic systems work through a kind of internal conversation, and can accomplish surprisingly complex tasks, such as maintaining a car’s speed while on cruise control or regulating an animal’s metabolism. Matthew Hutson, The New Yorker, 3 May 2021 Symptoms arise from the body’s inability to regulate metabolism. Thomas Curwen, Los Angeles Times, 26 Apr. 2021 The trials are the brainchild of cell metabolism researcher Lewis Cantley of Weill Cornell Medicine (WCM). Jocelyn Kaiser, Science | AAAS, 1 Apr. 2021 Recent research suggests that breakfast may not have as strong of an influence on metabolism speed or appetite regulation throughout the day. Stefani Sassos, Ms, Rdn, Cso, Good Housekeeping, 10 Mar. 2021 Such genes have been associated with everything from hairiness to fat metabolism. The Economist, 24 Feb. 2021

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'metabolism.' 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 metabolism

1878, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for metabolism

metabol(ic) + -ism, after French métabolisme or German Metabolismus

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Time Traveler for metabolism

Time Traveler

The first known use of metabolism was in 1878

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Statistics for metabolism

Last Updated

17 Jun 2021

Cite this Entry

“Metabolism.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/metabolism. Accessed 20 Jun. 2021.

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More Definitions for metabolism

metabolism

noun

English Language Learners Definition of metabolism

biology : the chemical processes by which a plant or an animal uses food, water, etc., to grow and heal and to make energy

metabolism

noun
me·​tab·​o·​lism | \ mə-ˈta-bə-ˌli-zəm How to pronounce metabolism (audio) \

Kids Definition of metabolism

: the processes by which a living organism uses food to obtain energy and build tissue and disposes of waste material

metabolism

noun
me·​tab·​o·​lism | \ mə-ˈtab-ə-ˌliz-əm How to pronounce metabolism (audio) \

Medical Definition of metabolism

1a : the sum of the processes in the buildup and destruction of protoplasm specifically : the chemical changes in living cells by which energy is provided for vital processes and activities and new material is assimilated methods of determining body and tissue metabolism Bulletin of the University of Kentucky — see anabolism, catabolism
b : the sum of the processes by which a particular substance is handled (as by assimilation and incorporation or by detoxification and excretion) in the living body the metabolism of iodine in the thyroid
2 : metamorphosis sense 2 usually used in combination holometabolism

More from Merriam-Webster on metabolism

Nglish: Translation of metabolism for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of metabolism for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about metabolism

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