multifactorial

adjective
mul·​ti·​fac·​to·​ri·​al | \-fak-ˈtȯr-ē-əl \

Definition of multifactorial 

1 : caused or marked by a polygenic mode of inheritance dependent on a number of genes at different loci The essence of multifactorial (polygenic) inheritance is that a single component of the phenotype (a single character) can be controlled by several independent gene loci.— Ernst Mayr also : caused by or dependent on the interaction of multiple genes combined with one or more environmental factors Breast cancer is what scientists call "multifactorial" in that a variety of genetic, environmental and lifestyle factors are thought to play a role. — Francesca Lyman

2 or multifactor \-​ˈfak-​tər \ : having, involving, or produced by a variety of elements or causes a multifactorial approach multifactor authentication Ligament damage, particularly in a throwing arm, is a complex, multifactorial process.— Matt McCarthy

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Other Words from multifactorial

multifactorially \-​fak-​ˈtȯr-​ē-​ə-​lē \ adverb

Examples of multifactorial in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

Before a shot is even taken, Google’s Night Sight camera does a ton of multifactorial calculations. Vlad Savov, The Verge, "Google gives the Pixel camera superhuman night vision," 14 Nov. 2018 Aging is a multifactorial process and is heavily influenced by genetics, UV radiation exposure, and stress. Adam Hurly, GQ, "This Is How Sleep Deprivation Affects Your Appearance," 9 June 2018 Certainly, anyone would agree that the gap is a multifactorial phenomenon. Philly.com, "The orgasm gap is a thing. How can it be bridged?," 7 Mar. 2018

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

1920, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Last Updated

20 Nov 2018

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Time Traveler for multifactorial

The first known use of multifactorial was in 1920

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More Definitions for multifactorial

multifactorial

adjective
mul·​ti·​fac·​to·​ri·​al | \-fak-ˈtōr-ē-əl, -ˈtȯr- \

Medical Definition of multifactorial 

1 : having characters or a mode of inheritance dependent on a number of genes at different loci

2 or multifactor \-​ˈfak-​tər \ : having, involving, or produced by a variety of elements or causes a multifactorial study a disease with a multifactorial etiology

Other Words from multifactorial

multifactorially \-​ē-​ə-​lē \ adverb
multifactoriality \-​ˌtōr-​ē-​ˈal-​ət-​ē, -​ˌtȯr-​ \ noun plural -ties

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