Definition of follicle in English:



  • 1Anatomy
    A small secretory cavity, sac, or gland.

    • ‘Associated with the follicle are sebaceous glands and the arrector pili smooth muscle fiber bundle.’
    • ‘These drugs penetrate the follicle and sebaceous gland well and decrease colonization by P. acnes.’
    • ‘Retention of the sebaceous secretions, and dilation of the follicle, may lead to cyst formation.’
    • ‘Then, a fluidfilled space develops, to form the antrum of a tertiary follicle.’
    • ‘Inside the gland, multiple follicle pouches join to form excretory ducts, which empty into the urethra.’
    bag, pouch, bladder, blister
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1 The sheath of cells and connective tissue which surrounds the root of a hair.
      • ‘Further, research also shows that Benzoyl Peroxide will get rid of the hair follicle of dead cells to prevent further plugging of pores.’
      • ‘Acne is a disorder of the pilosebaceous unit, which is made up of a hair follicle, sebaceous gland and a hair.’
      • ‘The oily sebum rises up through the hair follicle, providing lubrication for your skin and hair.’
      • ‘Electrolysis involves inserting a needle under your skin in order to zap an electric current through your hair follicle and damage it.’
      • ‘An expensive and often painful procedure, it involves inserting a needle directly into the hair follicle to electrocute the root.’
      • ‘The cells that supply the hair follicle remain active, so the potential for re-growth is always there.’
      • ‘In hair follicle cells, for example, the wingless gene changes stem cells to skin cells.’
      • ‘They result when oil, dead skin cells and bacteria trapped in the hair follicle cause it to swell and eventually burst.’
      • ‘The usual remedies for unwanted hair include plucking, shaving, waxing or chemical depilatories, but all of them are temporary, as none damage the hair follicle.’
      • ‘Genetic profiling revealed 97 genes that were ‘switched on’ in the hair follicle stem cells.’
      • ‘Eventually the hair follicle dies and the hair is permanently lost.’
      • ‘But with first-time waxers, the hair follicle is often surrounded by something similar to a whitehead, so when you rip it out it can cause a bit of bleeding.’
      • ‘The hair follicle is located under the skin, houses the hair bulb and root, and is responsible for the hair's growth.’
      • ‘No one had been able to isolate stem cells from the hair follicle in this way before.’
      • ‘Tiny needles are inserted into the hair follicle followed by an electrical charge that damages it, causing it to stop producing hair.’
      • ‘Laser systems emit a beam of light that passes through the skin to the hair follicle.’
      • ‘Pro-vitamin B5 and zinc serve as backup, latching on to the binding sites in the hair follicle where DHT would do its damage.’
      • ‘This ingredient exfoliates the surface of the skin and reduces inflammation in the hair follicle, helping the hair to break through.’
      • ‘When DHT is produced locally within the hair follicle, it causes regular hairs to turn into miniature hairs, eventually killing the hair follicle.’
      • ‘Folliculitis presents with a subcorneal pustule in the opening of a hair follicle, with surrounding neutrophilic infiltrate.’
    2. 1.2
      • ‘De Graaf, working without the aid of a microscope, made the error of thinking that the fluid-filled follicles were the ova themselves.’
      • ‘A value of less than 10 antral follicles suggests reduced ovarian reserve.’
      • ‘And your brain is putting out follicle stimulating hormone, trying to get the ovary to respond.’
      • ‘In most normal human menstrual cycles only one follicle reaches full maturity, to be released at ovulation, on about day 14.’
      • ‘The ovary consists of a cortical zone composed of a specialized stroma, which contains follicles with ova.’
  • 2Botany
    A dry fruit that is derived from a single carpel and opens on one side only to release its seeds.

    • ‘A fruit may consist of a single follicle or two joined follicles.’
    • ‘The fruits produced by these partially emasculated flowers were single follicles and contained relatively few seeds.’
    • ‘The three fruits that were formed by flowers in the emasculation treatment were single follicles.’
    • ‘To sow the seed, allow the pods, or follicles, to ripen on the tree.’
    • ‘If you wish to sow, allow plumeria seed pods, or follicles, to ripen on the tree.’


Late Middle English: from Latin folliculus ‘little bag’, diminutive of follis ‘bellows’.