Definition of medaka in US English:


(also medakafish)


  • A small Japanese freshwater fish of variable color that is bred for aquariums and also extensively studied in the sciences.

    Oryzias latipes, family Adrianichthyidae

    • ‘The Japanese medaka were purchased from a biological supply company.’
    • ‘Genetic linkage maps have been developed for a number of fish species, including zebra fish, medaka, catfish, rainbow trout, Atlantic salmon, and Lake Malawi cichlids.’
    • ‘This estimate is similar to the value of tilapia, medaka, and Japanese flounder.’
    • ‘In the medaka, cortisol treatment increased the ability of acid-exposed fish to maintain plasma sodium levels.’
    • ‘Such a lack of uniformity has been reported in medaka and zebrafish.’


Early 20th century: from Japanese me(y) ‘eye’ + -daka ‘high’.