Definition of vacuole in English:



  • 1A space or vesicle within the cytoplasm of a cell, enclosed by a membrane and typically containing fluid.

    • ‘They do this by conjugating the molecules with other molecules to produce stable, soluble forms that are stored in vacuoles within the cells.’
    • ‘The electrode tip pushes through the cell wall tending to jump quickly across the plasma membrane into either the cytoplasm or the vacuole.’
    • ‘In slowly dried tissues, considerable cell wall folding had occurred, there was substantial subdivision of the vacuoles and some plasma membrane withdrawal from the cell walls.’
    • ‘The protective membranes that surround the vacuoles closely resemble cell membranes in the human liver that serve a similar function.’
    • ‘Plant cell vacuoles are multifunctional organelles that occupy a large part of most plant cells.’
    1. 1.1 A small cavity or space in tissue, especially in nervous tissue as the result of disease.
      • ‘The smaller the artery or the more constricted it was, the more vacuoles you got.’
      • ‘Intracytoplasmic vacuoles in renal cell carcinoma tend to be smaller, more numerous, and do not contain dense inclusions.’
      • ‘Some tumor cells contained intracytoplasmic vacuoles and eccentrically displaced nuclei, forming a signet ring cell appearance.’
      • ‘The toxicant specifically targets the central nervous system, creating vacuoles that are apparent only through microscopic examination of very fresh brain tissue.’
      • ‘Interestingly, in both ventricles myocytes adjacent to the adipose tissue showed multiple sarcoplasmic vacuoles.’


Mid 19th century: from French, diminutive of Latin vacuus ‘empty’.