Definition of galactose in English:



mass nounChemistry
  • A sugar of the hexose class which is a constituent of lactose and many polysaccharides.

    • ‘Its molecule is split in fermentation or digestion to yield the simple monosaccharide sugars dextrose and galactose.’
    • ‘The enzyme lactase breaks down the lactose to galactose and glucose.’
    • ‘The main symptom of this disease, which is treatable by the complete removal of lactose and galactose from the diet, is early onset cataracts.’
    • ‘The enzyme splits and hydrolyzes dietary lactose into glucose and galactose for transport across the cell membrane.’
    • ‘The sugars glucose, galactose, and fructose all have six carbon atoms, twelve hydrogen atoms, and six oxygen atoms.’


Mid 19th century: from Greek gala, galaktos ‘milk’ + -ose.