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The ability of an organism, such as bacteria, to live in the absence of oxygen. Examples are tetanus, gangrene and botulism. Some chemical reactions, such as fermentation, are also anaerobic.

Synonyms and Related Terms

Anaerobie (Deut.); anaérobie (Fr.); anaëroob (Ned.);


  • Richard S. Lewis, Hawley's Condensed Chemical Dictionary, Van Nostrand Reinhold, New York, 10th ed., 1993
  • Random House, Webster's Encyclopedic Unabridged Dictionary of the English Language, Grammercy Book, New York, 1997
  • The American Heritage Dictionary or Encarta, via Microsoft Bookshelf 98, Microsoft Corp., 1998

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