Definition of lysis in US English:



  • The disintegration of a cell by rupture of the cell wall or membrane.

    • ‘One class of dosage suppressors is composed of genes encoding cell wall proteins, indicating that alterations in cell wall structure can rescue the cell lysis in ram cells.’
    • ‘Presumably, the shock treatments that elicit bursting disrupt the balance of wall synthesis and lysis responsible for cell wall extension.’
    • ‘Inhibition of cell wall synthesis by penicillin resulted in disruption of the cell wall and lysis of the cell.’
    • ‘Apparently cinnamaldehyde blocks mitochondrial respiration and causes lysis of cultured liver cells.’
    • ‘However, apart from using an unstable enzyme, our first route had other problems, caused by cell lysis (rupture of the cell walls) during the biotransformation, which hampered product recovery.’


Early 19th century: from Latin, from Greek lusis ‘loosening’, from luein ‘loosen’.