tri·den·tate | \(ˈ)trī-¦den-ˌtāt\

Definition of tridentate 

1 : having three teeth, processes, or points a tridentate leaf

2 chemistry : attached to the central atom in a coordination complex by three bonds used of ligands and chelating groups Each cage is built from two different tridentate ligands held together with three platinum or palladium ions.Chemical & Engineering News, 5 July 1999 — compare bidentate, monodentate, polydentate

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History and Etymology for tridentate

New Latin tridentatus, from tri- + -dentatus -dentate

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