homeostasis

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English[edit]

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Alternative forms[edit]

Etymology[edit]

Coined from Ancient Greek ὅμος (hómos, similar) + ιστημι (istēmi, standing still)/stasis (from στάσις (stásis)) by Walter Bradford Cannon.

Pronunciation[edit]

  • (US) IPA(key): /ˌhoʊmioʊˈsteɪsɪs/

Noun[edit]

homeostasis (plural homeostases)

  1. (physiology) The ability of a system or living organism to adjust its internal environment to maintain a state of dynamic constancy; such as the ability of warm-blooded animals to maintain a stable temperature.
    • 2011, Professional Guide to Pathophysiology, Lippincott, Williams, & Wilkins, page 1:
      When homeostasis is disrupted by an external stressor - such as injury, lack of nutrients, or invasion by parasites or other organisms - illness may occur.
  2. Such a dynamic equilibrium or balance.

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