ni·​trite | \ ˈnī-ˌtrīt How to pronounce nitrite (audio) \

Definition of nitrite

: a salt or ester of nitrous acid

Examples of nitrite in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web On that occasion, Wang poured nitrite into a glass used by Feng, causing minor injuries. Ben Westcott, CNN, "Chinese kindergarten teacher sentenced to death for poisoning 25 students with nitrite-laced porridge," 29 Sep. 2020 Earlier Tuesday, Lebanon’s interior minister said 2,700 tons of ammonium nitrite exploded in a warehouse in Port of Beirut after having been stored there for years. Fox News, "Trump description of Beirut blast as ‘attack’ is premature, some US officials say," 5 Aug. 2020 Both the Actinomyces and Veillonella can turn nitrate—found in foods like spinach and other leafy greens—into nitrite, which allows our cells to make nitric oxide which helps with vital functions like controlling blood pressure. Popular Science, "This photo confirms that your tongue is basically a microbe party," 20 Apr. 2020 Foods that contain nitrites or nitrates—including bacon, grilled or smoked meats, and even some fruits and vegetables—can fuel a chemical reaction in the stomach that creates NDMA. Michele Cohen Marill, Wired, "The FDA Asks Companies to Stop Selling Ranitidine," 9 Apr. 2020 In the experiments, the phytoplankton greedily sucked up the available organic and inorganic nitrogen coming off the ash in the form of nitrite, nitrate, and ammonium. Jenessa Duncombe, Smithsonian Magazine, "Could Wildfire Ash Feed the Ocean’s Tiniest Life-Forms?," 4 Mar. 2020 The nitrite is an important component (the N) in the creation of NDMA. Michele Cohen Marill, Wired, "The FDA Announces Two More Antacid Recalls Due to Cancer Risk," 10 Jan. 2020 That’s because nitrites break down and form nitric oxide, which then binds to the hemoglobin molecules in the meat and prevent it from oxidizing. Billy Cadden, Popular Science, "Tools and techniques: How to make a BLT from scratch," 8 Aug. 2017 Scientists had hypothesized that any drugs that raised the stomach’s pH could increase the growth of bacteria that produce nitrites, which could interact with chemicals called amines to produce nitrosamines. Tanya Lewis, Scientific American, "What We Know About the Possible Carcinogen Found in Zantac," 28 Oct. 2019

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

1788, in the meaning defined above

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Time Traveler for nitrite

Time Traveler

The first known use of nitrite was in 1788

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Cite this Entry

“Nitrite.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 11 May. 2021.

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More Definitions for nitrite


ni·​trite | \ ˈnī-ˌtrīt How to pronounce nitrite (audio) \

Medical Definition of nitrite

: a salt or ester of nitrous acid

More from Merriam-Webster on nitrite

Nglish: Translation of nitrite for Spanish Speakers Encyclopedia article about nitrite

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