my·​co·​plas·​ma ˌmī-kō-ˈplaz-mə How to pronounce mycoplasma (audio)
plural mycoplasmas also mycoplasmata ˌmī-kō-ˈplaz-mə-tə How to pronounce mycoplasma (audio)
: any of a genus (Mycoplasma of the family Mycoplasmataceae) of pleomorphic gram-negative chiefly nonmotile bacteria that lack a cell wall and are mostly parasitic usually in mammals

called also pleuropneumonia-like organism

mycoplasmal adjective

Example Sentences

Recent Examples on the Web Most of the cats, 78 percent, had the respiratory diseases mycoplasma or calicivirus. Emilie Le Beau Lucchesi, Discover Magazine, 17 Mar. 2022 Plus, there’s no easy diagnostic test for mycoplasma. Tony Dajer, Discover Magazine, 30 Apr. 2015 Wild birds can spread diseases such as mycoplasma, infectious bronchitis, Salmonella and other diseases to poultry and vice versa. Leada Gore |, al, 2 May 2022 Labs across the country ruled out several causes, including the bacterial infection mycoplasma, salmonella and other diseases. David Kindy, Smithsonian Magazine, 27 Aug. 2021 STIs like herpes, gonorrhea, chlamydia, and mycoplasma can also infect and irritate the urethra, the Mayo Clinic explains (so treating the STI could potentially address your UTI as well). Patia Braithwaite, SELF, 3 Feb. 2020 In 2004 the herd was 200-plus animals strong when members contracted mycoplasma ovipneumoiae, a pneumonia-causing bacteria that killed 70-80% of the animals. USA TODAY, 28 Jan. 2020 In late May, the FDA approved its second mycoplasma genitalium test application for Roche, the Swiss multinational pharmaceutical and diagnostic giant. San Diego Union-Tribune, 2 Aug. 2019 There are many types of mycoplasma bacteria that commonly reside inside the human body, and most don’t appear harmful. San Diego Union-Tribune, 2 Aug. 2019 See More

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

Word History


New Latin

First Known Use

1955, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of mycoplasma was in 1955

Dictionary Entries Near mycoplasma

Cite this Entry

“Mycoplasma.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 20 Mar. 2023.

Medical Definition


my·​co·​plas·​ma ˌmī-kō-ˈplaz-mə How to pronounce mycoplasma (audio)
capitalized : the type genus of the family Mycoplasmataceae containing minute pleomorphic gram-negative chiefly nonmotile bacteria that are mostly parasitic usually in mammals see pleuropneumonia sense 2
plural mycoplasmas also mycoplasmata -mət-ə How to pronounce mycoplasma (audio) : any bacterium of the genus Mycoplasma or of the family Mycoplasmataceae

called also pleuropneumonia-like organism, PPLO

mycoplasmal adjective

More from Merriam-Webster on mycoplasma

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