Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. A tough, protective, semitransparent substance, primarily a nitrogen-containing polysaccharide, forming the principal component of arthropod exoskeletons and the cell walls of certain fungi.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A complex polysaccharide, a polymer of N-acetylglucosamine, found in the exoskeletons of arthropods and in the cell walls of fungi; thought to be responsible for some forms of asthma in humans.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. A white amorphous horny substance forming the harder part of the outer integument of insects, crustacea, and various other invertebrates; entomolin.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. The name given by Odier to the organic substance which forms the elytra and integuments of insects and the carapaces of Crustacea, and which may be obtained by exhausting the wing-cases of May-beetles or June-bugs with water, alcohol, ether, acetic acid, and boiling alkalis.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. a tough semitransparent horny substance; the principal component of the exoskeletons of arthropods and the cell walls of certain fungi

Etymologies

French chitine : New Latin chitōn, mollusk (from Greek khitōn, chiton; see chiton) + -ine2.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From French chitine, from Latin chitōn ("mollusk"). See also chiton. (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • Her chitin was the color of raw amethyst, the glow of her great golden compound eyes was significantly dimmed, and her antennae hung forward in limp arcs.

    Diuturnity's Dawn

  • Their chitin was a rich maroon color, black under - neath and marked by thick black vertical stripes across the vestigial wing cases.

    The Moment Of The Magician

  • If the gene, called chitin synthase, could be completely silenced, the mosquitoes may die without the use of pesticides because the chitin biosynthesis pathway would be blocked, Zhu said.

    Newswise: Latest News

  • The bags are treated with an antimicrobial product made with chitin, which is derived from crab shells and helps fight mold, mildew, fungus and harmful bacteria such as E. coli.

    The News Tribune - Tacoma - - HOMEPAGE

  • By modifying a sugar found in shells, called chitin, and injecting it into the spinal cords of the guinea pigs it was found that the sugar targeted the damaged cells and plugged the holes.

    Telegraph.co.uk: news, business, sport, the Daily Telegraph newspaper, Sunday Telegraph

  • They break down chitin, which is the second most abundant carbohydrate in nature after cellulose.

    PLoS ONE Alerts: New Articles

  • The cell walls of fungal cells contain a  carbohydrate called chitin not found in plant cell walls.

    Recently Uploaded Slideshows

  • The beetle's back and the crab's shell owe their toughness to a common compound called chitin that n ...

    THE MEDICAL NEWS

  • Other microbial adjuvants, such as chitin, alternatively activate macrophages to drive T H2 immunity [7].

    PLoS ONE Alerts: New Articles

  • The best word is "chitin," when "dykes" or something like that would have done fine - but the drunk, effusive Bosnian narrator seizes on that word and reuses it throughout the piece, adopting the ostentatious indicators of this American's genius.

    The L Magazine - New York City's Local Event and Arts & Culture Guide

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