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mucilage

mucilage (myōō´səlĬj), thick, glutinous substance, related to the natural gums, comprised usually of protein, polysaccharides, and uranides. It swells but does not dissolve in water. Mucilage is secreted by the seed covers of various plants, including marsh mallows and flaxes and certain seaweeds; it is the chief constituent of agar. In the plant it sometimes serves to check the loss of water to aid germination, to facilitate seed dispersal, and to store food. It is used in medicine as an emollient and a demulcent. Mucilage is employed also as an adhesive, and the term is extended to include other slimy adhesives, especially solutions of gum, such as tragacanth mucilage.

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mucilage

mu·ci·lage / ˈmyoōs(ə)lij/ • n. a viscous secretion or bodily fluid. ∎  a polysaccharide substance extracted as a viscous or gelatinous solution from plant roots, seeds, etc., and used in medicines and adhesives. ∎  an adhesive solution; gum or glue. DERIVATIVES: mu·ci·lag·i·nous / ˌmyoōsəˈlajənəs/ adj.

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mucilage

mucilage Any of a large group of complex polysaccharides frequently present in the cell walls of aquatic plants and in the seed coats of certain other species. Mucilages are hard when dry and slimy when wet. Like gums they probably have a general protective function or serve to anchor the plant. See also glycocalyx; mucigel.

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mucilage

mucilage Any of a variety of complex, gum-like carbohydrates that are hard when dry, and slimy and jelly-like when wet. Mucilages are produced by many bacteria and plants. In most cases they contribute to water retention. Some seeds have a mucilaginous coating that absorbs water and thus assists germination.

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mucilage

mucilage viscous fluid XIV; gummy secretion XVII; (U.S.) adhesive gum XIX. — (O)F. — late L. mūcilāgō, -āgin- musty juice, f. mūcus MUCUS.
Hence mucilaginous XVII.

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mucilage

mucilage (mew-si-lij) n. (in pharmacy) a thick aqueous solution of a gum used as a lubricant in skin preparations, for the production of pills, and for the suspension of insoluble substances.

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mucilage

mucilageabridge, bridge, fridge, frig, midge, ridge •quayage • verbiage • foliage • lineage •ferriage •stowage, towage •buoyage, voyage •sewage •Babbage, cabbage •garbage • cribbage •Burbage, herbage •adage • bandage • yardage • headage •appendage • windage • bondage •vagabondage • cordage • poundage •wordage • staffage • roughage •baggage • mortgage • luggage •package, trackage •tankage • wreckage • breakage •leakage •linkage, shrinkage, sinkage •blockage, dockage, lockage •boscage • corkage • soakage •truckage • tallage • assemblage •railage •grillage, pillage, spillage, stillage, tillage, village •pupillage (US pupilage) • sacrilege •ensilage • mucilage • cartilage •sortilege • tutelage • curtilage •privilege •mileage, silage •acknowledge, college, foreknowledge, knowledge •haulage, stallage •spoilage • Coolidge

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