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From my experience on SE sites, I believe this is the right site to ask this question under "terminology".

I've been trying to find out whether English has one-word verbs for "undergo mitosis" and "undergo meiosis". I haven't been able to find confirmation on Google, but my linguistic imagination is limited, and I may have failed to google the right things.

Could you tell me if there are such verbs in common use in biology? I mean, if such verbs exist, can I find them in modern biology books or papers?

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    $\begingroup$ How about "divide" or even "multiply" (if you include the entire cell cycle)? Those are generic terms, but the process is called cell division. And minor pet peeve of mine: "Google" isn't a verb... $\endgroup$ – jello Aug 23 '12 at 3:16
  • $\begingroup$ What's wrong with "to undergo mitosis"? $\endgroup$ – nico Aug 23 '12 at 11:03
  • $\begingroup$ @nico Nothing is wrong with that. I just wanted to know if there's a shorter way of saying this. $\endgroup$ – ymar Aug 23 '12 at 11:45
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    $\begingroup$ I'm voting to close this question as off-topic because it is about linguistics rather than biology. There is no real problem. If you are writing a paper you would write "undergoes mitosis". $\endgroup$ – David Jun 25 at 11:15
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I'm actually not sure myself. If I were to use something, I would go with "Mitos'd" and "Meios'd".

However, you may not win over many fans, depending on the audience. If it's with students or maybe a professor, you could get away with shortening the processes. If it's in any formal setting, be as precise and descriptive as possible. It's not a lot of trouble to be more accurate and add "underwent" to the sentence.

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  • $\begingroup$ I agree - I do not recall seeing a verb for these actions, so in a paper or report use the actual terminology. But during discussions I'm sure people will get your meaning if you shorten the terms to "mitose" or "mitosed", or something. $\endgroup$ – Luke Aug 23 '12 at 8:42
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Mitosis as a process does not have a verb form. However, as a process, there is an adjective; you could describe cells that undergo mitosis as mitotic.

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Was just researching your exact same question. Self-replicate is the closest I could find or think of... but it's a very general verb, not even biology specific. e.g. Please don't self-replicate, I'm already having trouble with just one of you -- said the programmer to his memory gobbling AI program. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Self-replication

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