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Latin arbuscula, diminutive of arbor or arbos (tree; tuft of feathers).


  • IPA(key): /ˈɑːbʌs(ə)l/
  • Hyphenation: ar‧bus‧cle


arbuscle (plural arbuscles)

  1. (botany) A plant midway in height between a shrub and a tree; a dwarf tree.
    • 1657, "Renodæus" [Jean de Renou]; Richard Tomlinson, transl., A Medicinal Dispensatory, containing the VVhole Body of Physick: Discovering the Natures, Properties, and Vertues of Vegetables, Minerals, & Animals: The Manner of Compounding Medicaments, and the Way to Administer Them. Methodically Digested in Five Books of Philosophical and Pharmaceutical Institutions; Three Books of Physical Materials, Galenical and Chymical. Together with a most Perfect and Absolute Pharmacopoea or Apothecaries Shop. Accommodated with Three Useful Tables, London: Printed by Jo: Streater and Ja: Cottrel; and are to be sold by Henry Fletcher at the three gilt Cups neer the west-end of Pauls, OCLC 606905267, page 395:
      Gumme is an Arabick word, and when it is put abſolutely; it muſt be underſtood of Gum-Arabick, which Galen calls Thebane, ſome Babylonian, and others Acanthine Gumme. It flowes from a certain arbuſcle, which [Pedanius] Dioſcorides calls Acacia, whereof he conſtitutes two ſorts []
    • 1853, F[rederick] Knighton, The American Etymological School Grammar, containing Copious Exercises, and a Systematic View of the Formation and Derivation of Words, from the Anglo-Saxon, Latin and Greek, which Explain the Etymology of above Ten Thousand English Words, Philadelphia, Pa.: Robert E. Peterson & Co. 124, Arch Street, OCLC 41983835, page 103:
      Ar′boret or arbus′cle. A little tree.
    • 1967, OTS, Washington, D.C.: Office of Technical Services, United States Department of Commerce, OCLC 24327584, pages 87 and 150:
      Hybrid 800 was an arbuscle only 1.5 m in height at the age of six years because of suppression by adjoining poplars and honeylocusts. [] Further observations have shown that plants subjected to summer pruning when young suffered little from frosts. They continued to grow as arbuscles and no longer needed summer pruning. Some are now no less winterhardy than the most winterhardy specimens.
  2. (mycology) A branched hypha in some fungi.
    • 1956, Phytomorphology, Delhi: International Society of Plant Morphologists, OCLC 1604856, page 71:
      The hyphae of the arbuscle, which are finely ramified and form a floccose mass, soon lose their individuality and make a structureless granular and gummy conglomeration []
  3. (mycology) The site at which a symbiotic fungus attaches to the roots of a plant and exchanges nutrients, etc., with it.
    • 1979, New Zealand Journal of Botany, Wellington: Department of Scientific and Industrial Research, OCLC 56127698, page 57:
      Detailed view of a typical fine endophyte arbuscle in the inner cortex. Note the well preserved structural integrity of the endophyte and the characteristic bifurcate hyphae [] . Infection was with the fine endophyte Glomus tenuis [] .
    • 1991, Ewald Sieverding, Kathryn Mulhern, editor, Vesicular-arbuscular Mycorrhiza Management in Tropical Agrosystems [Schriftenreihe der Deutschen Gesellschaft für Technische Zusammenarbeit; 224], English edition, Eschborn: Deutsche Gesellschaft für Technische Zusammenarbeit, →ISBN, page 30:
      The arbuscle formation increases the metabolic activity of the host cell which is mainly due to the bidirectional transfer of metabolites and nutrients to and from the fungus. Arbuscles live for only 4–15 days. They degenerate and are digested by the host cell [] .
    • 2005, Gopi K. Podila; Ajit Varma, editors, Basic Research and Applications of Mycorrhizae, New Delhi: I. K. International Pvt. Ltd., →ISBN, page 60:
      Enhanced fluorochrome accessibility, increased nuclease sensitivity and chromatin dispersion reflects an increase in chromatin decondensation which is a sign of greater transcriptional activity of the plant genome in arbuscle containing cells [] . The branching progression of the fungus into the host cell provokes de novo synthesis of the periarbuscular membrane. The periarbuscular membrane derived from the peripheral plasma membrane completely surrounds the arbuscle.
  4. (zoology) A clump of feather-like cilia (hairlike structures).

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