secretion

noun
se·​cre·​tion | \ si-ˈkrē-shən How to pronounce secretion (audio) \

Definition of secretion

1a : the process of segregating, elaborating, and releasing some material either functionally specialized (such as saliva) or isolated for excretion (such as urine)
b : a product of secretion formed by an animal or plant especially : one performing a specific useful function in the organism
2 [ 2secrete ] : the act of hiding something : concealment

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Other Words from secretion

secretionary \ si-​ˈkrē-​shə-​ˌner-​ē How to pronounce secretionary (audio) \ adjective

Synonyms & Antonyms for secretion

Synonyms

caching, concealment, hiding, stashing

Antonyms

display, exhibition, exposure, parading, showing

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Examples of secretion in a Sentence

the secretion of stomach acids root secretions that repel insects

Recent Examples on the Web

These beds are often used with patients who have life-threatening pneumonia and can tilt patients in order to expose portions of patients’ lungs that are submerged in secretions and unable to function. San Diego Union-Tribune, "More deaths associated with mysterious vaping illness; 11 cases reported in San Diego County," 6 Sep. 2019 Flu is a respiratory disease, passed from person to person by droplets of lung secretions that travel a few feet when an infected person sneezes or coughs. Wired, "Why Denying Migrants Flu Shots Is a Dangerous, Foolish Move," 28 Aug. 2019 Measles is described by county health officials as a vaccine-preventable viral illness that's spread through coughing, sneezing and contact with secretions from the nose, mouth, and throat of an infected person. Chelsea Curtis, azcentral, "Measles exposure suspected from participant at Phoenix hip-hop event, health officials say," 23 Aug. 2019 The by-product is an acid secretion that leads to tooth decay. NBC News, "10 common oral hygiene mistakes, according to dentists," 18 July 2019 In the center of the flower is the entrance to a tube called a nectar spur, which contains sweet secretions. Douglas Main, National Geographic, "Discovery reveals secrets about how ghost orchids reproduce," 11 July 2019 The ants are feeding on a sweet secretion the plant releases. oregonlive.com, "How to grow beautiful peonies in Oregon," 2 July 2019 It is made for a world without liquids, secretions, or hard surfaces, all of which threaten its destruction. Nikil Saval, The New Yorker, "For Better and Worse, We Live in Jony Ive’s World," 2 July 2019 Microorganisms living within the rhizosphere feed off those secretions, and in exchange, provide the plant with additional nourishment. Lacy Schley, Discover Magazine, "That Word You Heard: Rhizosphere," 11 Feb. 2019

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

1646, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for secretion

French sécrétion, from Latin secretion-, secretio separation, from secernere to separate — more at secret

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Statistics for secretion

Last Updated

17 Sep 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for secretion

The first known use of secretion was in 1646

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More Definitions for secretion

secretion

noun

English Language Learners Definition of secretion

biology
: the production of a liquid by part of a plant or animal
: a substance produced and given off by a plant or animal part

secretion

noun
se·​cre·​tion | \ si-ˈkrē-shən How to pronounce secretion (audio) \

Kids Definition of secretion

1 : the act or process of giving off a substance the secretion of saliva by salivary glands
2 : a substance formed in and given off by a gland that usually performs a useful function in the body Digestive secretions contain enzymes.

secretion

noun
se·​cre·​tion | \ si-ˈkrē-shən How to pronounce secretion (audio) \

Medical Definition of secretion

1 : the process of segregating, elaborating, and releasing some material either functionally specialized (as saliva) or isolated for excretion (as urine)
2 : a product of secretion formed by an animal or plant especially : one performing a specific useful function in the organism

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Comments on secretion

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