tox·​i·​col·​o·​gy | \ ˌtäk-si-ˈkä-lə-jē How to pronounce toxicology (audio) \

Definition of toxicology

: a science that deals with poisons and their effect and with the problems involved (such as clinical, industrial, or legal problems)

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Other Words from toxicology

toxicologist \ ˌtäk-​si-​ˈkä-​lə-​jist How to pronounce toxicologist (audio) \ noun

Did You Know?

Even though most of us are aware of toxicology primarily from crime shows on TV, toxicologists actually do most of their work in other fields. Many are employed by drug companies, others by chemical companies. Many work for the government, making sure the public is being kept safe from environmental poisons in the water, soil, and air, as well as unhealthy substances in our food and drugs. These issues often have to do with quantity; questions about how much of some substance should be considered dangerous, whether in the air or in a soft drink, may be left to toxicologists. But occasionally a toxicology task may be more exciting: for instance, discovering that what looked like an ordinary heart attack was actually brought on by a hypodermic injection of a paralyzing muscle relaxant.

Examples of toxicology in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

According to police, the driver of the other car admitted to drinking but a toxicology report has not been completed. Allen Kim, CNN, "Browns defensive end Chris Smith played a week after his girlfriend was killed in a car accident," 17 Sep. 2019 No charges have been field and toxicology reports are pending., "You're using a browser set to private or incognito mode.," 12 Sep. 2019 In Bryan’s pocket, police found several blue pills stamped on one side with the letter M. A toxicology report listed fentanyl as the cause of death. Los Angeles Times, "Death, made in Mexico: Traffickers embrace fentanyl," 1 Sep. 2019 The police toxicology report detected a dangerous substance in Levy's blood called 2-methyl-2-butanol - or 2M2B - a colorless liquid that, taken in tiny doses, induces euphoria within 30 minutes. Anchorage Daily News, "How Veterans Affairs failed to stop a pathologist who misdiagnosed 3,000 cases," 30 Aug. 2019 Though toxicology tests had not been completed on Mr. Zamperoni, the charging document said the two other men had died after taking drugs Ms. Barini had given them that were laced with fentanyl, a powerful narcotic. New York Times, "Cipriani Chef Found Dead May Have Been Drugged in Robbery Scheme," 26 Aug. 2019 The tentative cause of death of all five children is carbon monoxide toxicity and smoke inhalation, but toxicology tests could take a few weeks to process, according to coroner Lyell P. Cook. Olivia Sanchez, USA TODAY, "Not enough smoke detectors in Pennsylvania day care where 5 children died, officials say," 13 Aug. 2019 Schroeder eventually got back in line but airport police had already been notified and he was given two toxicology tests, one of which showed that he was intoxicated, Hogan said. Minyvonne Burke And Jay Blackman, NBC News, "Delta Air Lines pilot arrested for allegedly being drunk before flight," 31 July 2019 The medical examiner’s office performed an autopsy Thursday morning and was awaiting results from toxicology tests as part of its investigation. Tonya Alanez,, "Lobster miniseason nears end with veteran diver dead and another man injured," 25 July 2019

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

circa 1799, in the meaning defined above

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Statistics for toxicology

Last Updated

29 Sep 2019

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Time Traveler for toxicology

The first known use of toxicology was circa 1799

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English Language Learners Definition of toxicology

technical : the study of poisonous chemicals, drugs, etc., and how a person or other living thing reacts to them


tox·​i·​col·​o·​gy | \ -ˈkäl-ə-jē How to pronounce toxicology (audio) \
plural toxicologies

Medical Definition of toxicology

: the scientific study of the adverse effects of chemical substances on the living organism

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Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with toxicology

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

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