Cytokine definition

sītə-kīn
Frequency:
Any of several regulatory proteins, such as the interleukins and lymphokines, that are released by cells of the immune system and act as intercellular mediators in the generation of an immune response.
noun
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Any of a group of molecules, including interferon, interleukin, and tumor necrosis factor, secreted by certain cells of the immune system, which modulate certain cell functions associated with immune response.
noun
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Any of various proteins, such as the interleukins and lymphokines, that are released by cells of the immune system and act in intercellular communication, especially in regulating inflammation and the immune response.
noun
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Any of several regulatory proteins, such as the interleukins and lymphokines, that are released by cells of the immune system and act as intercellular mediators in the generation of an immune response.
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(biochemistry, immunology) Any of various small regulatory proteins that regulate the cells of the immune system.
noun
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Other Word Forms

Noun

Singular:
cytokine
Plural:
cytokines

Origin of cytokine

  • cyto– Greek kīnein to move kinin

    From American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition