Skip to Main Content

++

INTRODUCTION

++

The glossary is intended as an adjunct to the index for rapid reference. The emphasis is on medical and biologic words and phrases that have not been defined in the text or are used frequently. The specific names of microorganisms, antimicrobial agents, and infectious diseases are in the index and not repeated here. Where a word has multiple uses, the one relevant to this text is emphasized.

++

The prefixes and suffixes in each alphabetical section include word elements used in combined form. The meaning of many words can be derived from the prefixes and suffixes and therefore have not been included in the glossary.

+

A-, An-

Without.

AB toxin

A bacterial toxin with separate binding (B) and active (A) units.

Acanthosis

Hyperplasia and thickening of prickle cell layer of skin.

Accessory sinuses

Blind-ended cavities in bone draining into nasal cavity.

Acetyl-coenzyme A

An energy-rich combination of acetic acid and coenzyme A.

Achlorhydria

Absence of hydrochloric acid in stomach.

Acid-fast

Describes an organism that resists acid decolorization after straining.

Acidosis

Increased acidity of body fluids.

Aciduric

Resistant to effects of acid.

Acquired immunity

Immunity developed following exposure to infectious agents or by infusion of antibodies.

Acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS)

A disease caused by HIV infection of key components of the immune system.

Actin

Major structural protein of the eukaryotic cell cytoskeleton.

Acute viral gastroenteritis

Condition characterized by vomiting and diarrhea.

Addison disease

Result of primary deficiency of production of adrenal hormones.

Adenocarcinoma

Malignant tumor derived from glandular epithelium.

Adhesin

Surface component of a microbe that binds to a cell receptor.

Adnexa (uterine)

Fallopian tubes and ovaries.

ADP-ribosylation

An enzymatic reaction that attaches the ADP-ribose moiety from NAD to the target protein.

Adrenal glands

Important endocrine glands situated above the kidneys.

Aerobactin

A hydroxame siderophore produced by many bacteria.

Agammaglobulinemia

Absence of immunoglobulins in the blood.

Agar

A polysaccharide derived from algae used as a solidifying agent in culture media.

Agarose gel

Highly purified agar.

Agglutinate

Clumping.

Agranulocytosis

Failure of white blood cell production in bone marrow.

-algia

Pain.

Allele

Alternate forms of a gene at the same chromosomal locus.

Alloantigen

An antigen that exists in alternate allelic forms.

Allosteric

Property of a protein that leads to a change in conformation and function associated with attachment of a smaller effector molecule.

Alternative pathway

An antibody-independent mechanism of complement activation.

Alveoli (lung)

Microscopic air sacs in lung.

Ameboma

A local inflammatory mass caused by an amebic infection.

Aminoglycosides

A group of antibiotics that inhibit protein synthesis by ribosomal binding.

Amniotic fluid

Fluid in amniotic sac surrounding the fetus.

Anaerobe

Microorganism that grows and survives only in the absence of oxygen.

Analog

Structurally or functionally similar substance or property.

Anamnestic

Enhanced immunologic memory response on reexposure to antigen.

Anaphylaxis

Immediate and severe antibody-mediated hypersensitivity reaction.

Anergic

Absence of ability to respond to antigen.

Anergy

A state of unresponsiveness to antigens.

Aneurysm

Localized abnormal dilatation of blood vessel.

Anicteric

Absence of clinical ...

Pop-up div Successfully Displayed

This div only appears when the trigger link is hovered over. Otherwise it is hidden from view.