Degeneration


Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Medical, Legal, Financial, Acronyms, Wikipedia.
Related to Degeneration: macular degeneration

degeneration

1. Biology the loss of specialization, function, or structure by organisms and their parts, as in the development of vestigial organs
2. Biology
a. impairment or loss of the function and structure of cells or tissues, as by disease or injury, often leading to death (necrosis) of the involved part
b. the resulting condition
3. Electronics negative feedback of a signal

Degeneration

 

(biology). (1) In morphology, the process of cell or organ destruction; for example, the disappearance of the tail in the tadpole when it is transformed into a frog.

(2) In microbiology, the attenuation of the viability of a culture of unicellular organisms under unfavorable growth conditions.

(3) The concepts of general and specific degeneration were introduced into the theory of evolution by A. N. Severtsov. By general degeneration, or morphophysiological regression, Severtsov meant one of the trends of the evolutionary process, characterized by a reduction of the organs with active functions (organs of locomotion, sense organs, the central nervous system) and the progressive development of organs that are passive but important for the animal’s survival (the sexual system and the passive means of defense, such as integuments and protective coloration). The development of tunicates, cirripeds, and tapeworms proceeded according to the principle of general degeneration. In specific degeneration, organs present in the ancestors are reduced in the process of an organism’s historical development: for example, the extremities in legless lizards and the shell in cephalopods. The cause of the reduction of organs is the absence of the conditions necessary for their development and functioning.

(4) In pathology, the term “degeneration” was introduced by R. Virchow, who admitted the possibility of the “degeneration” of cells. Present-day medicine has established that changes in cells depend on local or general metabolic disturbance, or dystrophy.


Degeneration

 

a change in the structure and/or function of cells and tissues as a result of certain diseases. The term “degeneration” was introduced into the language of general pathology by R. Virchow to designate processes in which the normal components of the cytoplasm are displaced and in which unnecessary or harmful deposits form in the intercellular matter. The deposits include protein-like substances, fatlike substances (in which case the deposition process is called lipoidosis), and calcium salts. In Soviet medical literature these pathological processes, which Virchow called degenerations, are conventionally termed dystrophies.

In some medical disciplines, “degeneration” has a specific meaning. For example, in neuropathology it usually refers to decomposition of the nerve fiber as a result of injury or death of the corresponding neuron.

degeneration

[di‚jen·ə′rā·shən]
(electronics)
The loss or gain in an amplifier through unintentional negative feedback.
(medicine)
Deterioration of cellular integrity with no sign of response to injury or disease.
General deterioration of a physical, mental, or moral state.
(statistical mechanics)
A phenomenon which occurs in gases at very low temperatures when the molecular heat drops to less than ³⁄₂ the gas constant.
References in periodicals archive ?
Snail track degeneration occurs circumferentially in the peripheral retina and appears as chains of whitish radiant dots consisting of microglia and astrocytes.
If you have the beginnings of macular degeneration, or a full-blown case, there are three things you need to do starting today:
Treatments range from injections for wet macular degeneration to Spectacle Miniature Telescopes for mild to moderate macular degeneration.
2 million people have some degree of macular degeneration, and 890,000 of them have advanced disease.
Together, wet and dry macular degeneration make up the leading causes of vision loss among people over age 60, afflicting millions of U.
The study also found that the twin who was the heavier smoker tended to have more severe case of macular degeneration.
They were interested in the relationship between plasma levels of the amino acid homocysteine and a particularly aggressive form of age-related macular degeneration known as exudative macular degeneration.
There are three patterns of hypertrophic olivary degeneration as they relate to the location of the primary lesion.
An ophthalmologist would probably say it's likely he'll continue to enjoy his reading and TV, provided there's no significant loss of sight associated with your dad's early signs of macular degeneration.
There are two types of macular degeneration, known as 'dry' and 'wet'.
My optometrist suspected early macular degeneration, and a retinal specialist confirmed the diagnosis the next day.
This form of macular degeneration can lead to legal blindness within months.