non-bi·​o·​log·​i·​cal ˌnän-ˌbī-ə-ˈlä-ji-kəl How to pronounce non-biological (audio)
variants or nonbiological
: not biological: such as
: not relating to, marked by, or derived from life and living processes
non-biological reactions
non-biological materials
nonbiological methane
: not connected by genetic relationship
a non-biological parent
non-biologically adverb
or nonbiologically
non-biologically produced materials

Examples of non-biological in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Geron was identified as the child’s non-biological grandmother. Kc Baker, Peoplemag, 12 Feb. 2024 Woodall played Jack in The White Lotus season two, a British boy who flirted with Haley Lu Richardson’s Portia and assisted his non-biological uncle Quentin (Tom Hollander) in a plan to murder Jennifer Coolidge’s Tanya. Zoe G Phillips, The Hollywood Reporter, 11 Feb. 2024 Identifying a signal as a sign of life is tricky, though, because both gases can also be accounted for by non-biological processes. Dan Falk, Smithsonian Magazine, 29 Jan. 2024 There are non-biological explanations for the observations as well. Phil Plait, Discover Magazine, 7 June 2010 The bond between the non-biological parent and child can grow as strong as any, but are not protected socially or legally when under threat. Callum McLennan, Variety, 30 Oct. 2023 Similarly, amino acids—the building blocks of proteins—can be created either by life or by non-biological chemistry. Carmen Drahl, Smithsonian Magazine, 10 May 2023 However, Li says using cryo-EM for non-biological materials remains more of a novel application. IEEE Spectrum, 16 July 2019 Black people in original studies to develop the test may have had nonbiological exposures that affected creatinine levels, such as medications or dietary differences. Nada Hassanein, USA TODAY, 23 Jan. 2023

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'non-biological.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

1861, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of non-biological was in 1861

Dictionary Entries Near non-biological

Cite this Entry

“Non-biological.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 25 May. 2024.

Medical Definition


variants or nonbiological
: not biological
non-biological parents
non-biological factors
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