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Pronunciation: ma'triks, mat'riks; ma'tri-sez, mat'ri-sez


  1. The formative portion of a nail.
  2. The intercellular substance of a tissue.
  3. A surrounding substance within which something is contained or embedded, the fatty tissue in which blood vessels or lymph nodes lie provides a matrix for these embedded structures.
  4. A mold in which anything is cast or swaged; a counterdie; an instrument, plastic material, or metal strip specially shaped for holding and shaping the material used to fill a tooth cavity.
  5. A rectangular array of numbers or symbol quantities that simplify the execution of linear operations of tedious complexity, the Ito method; the theory of matrices is widely used in solving simultaneous equations and in population genetics.
  6. The support or stationary phase in chromatography or zone electrophoresis.

[L. womb; female breeding animal]

Further information

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© Copyright 2018 Wolters Kluwer. All Rights Reserved. Review date: Sep 19, 2016.