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Medical Term:


Pronunciation: bak-tēr′ē-ŭm


A unicellular prokaryotic microorganism that usually multiplies by cell division and has a cell wall that provides a constancy of form; they may be aerobic or anaerobic, motile or nonmotile, and free living, saprophytic, commensal, parasitic, or pathogenic.

[Mod. L. fr. G. baktērion, dim. of baktron, a staff]

See Also: Cyanobacteria

© Copyright 2017 Wolters Kluwer. All Rights Reserved. Review Date: Sep 19, 2016.