<chemistry> An agent which purifies or cleanses.

<cell biology> Amphipathic, surface active, molecules with polar (water soluble) and nonpolar hydrophobic) domains. They bind strongly to hydrophobic molecules or molecular domains to confer water solubility.

Examples include: sodium dodecyl sulphate, fatty acid salts, the Triton family, octyl glycoside.

Origin: L. Detergere = to cleanse

(11 Mar 2008)

detection, detector, detector coil, detent < Prev | Next > detergents, deterioration, determinant

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