1. Having a lesser degree of tension. 2. Having a lesser osmotic pressure than a reference solution, which is ordinarily assumed to be blood plasma or interstitial fluid; more specifically, refers to a fluid in which cells would swell. SYN: hypoisotonic.

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hy·po·ton·ic .hī-pə-'tän-ik, -pō- adj
1) having deficient tone or tension <\hypotonic children>
2) having a lower osmotic pressure than a surrounding medium or a fluid under comparison <a \hypotonic solution> compare HYPERTONIC (2), isotonic (1)
hy·po·ton·i·cal·ly -i-k(ə-)lē adv

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1. describing a solution that has a lower osmotic pressure than another solution. See osmosis.
2. describing muscles that demonstrate diminished tonicity.

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hy·po·ton·ic (hi-po-tonґik) 1. denoting a solution which, when bathing body cells, causes a net flow of water across the semipermeable cell membrane into the cell. 2. denoting a solution having less tonicity than another solution, e.g., the blood, with which it is compared. 3. exhibiting hypotonia.

Medical dictionary. 2011.

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  • hypotonic — 1873, from HYPO (Cf. hypo ) + TONIC (Cf. tonic) …   Etymology dictionary

  • hypotonic — [hī΄pō tän′ik, hī΄pətän′ik] adj. 1. having abnormally low tension or tone, esp. of the muscles 2. having an osmotic pressure lower than that of an isotonic solution hypotonicity [hī΄pōtə nis′ə tē, hī΄pətə nis′ə tē] n …   English World dictionary

  • hypotonic — adjective Etymology: International Scientific Vocabulary Date: 1895 1. having deficient tone or tension < hypotonic children > 2. having a lower osmotic pressure than a surrounding medium or a fluid under comparison < hypotonic organisms > •… …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • hypotonic — having a lower concentration relative to the environment, e.g. a marine teleost is hypotonic to its environment (and hence tends to lose water and gain salts). Opposite of hypertonic …   Dictionary of ichthyology

  • hypotonic — Osmotic potential less than that of living cells. Cells placed in a hypotonic solution will absorb water and display swelling and turgidity. Opposite: hypertonic …   Glossary of Biotechnology

  • hypotonic — Of a fluid, having a concentration that will cause osmotic shrinkage of cells immersed in it. Not necessarily hypo osmotic …   Dictionary of molecular biology

  • hypotonic — hypotonicity /huy poh toh nis i tee/, n. /huy peuh ton ik/, adj. 1. Physiol. (of tissue) having less than the normal tone. 2. Physical Chem. noting a solution of lower osmotic pressure than another solution with which it is compared (opposed to… …   Universalium

  • hypotonic — adjective a) Having a lower osmotic pressure than another. b) Having less than normal tension. Ant: hypertonic …   Wiktionary

  • hypotonic — adj. having poor tone or tension (of muscles or tissue); having a lower osmotic pressure than another solution to which it is compared (Chemistry) …   English contemporary dictionary

  • hypotonic — [ˌhʌɪpə(ʊ) tɒnɪk] adjective 1》 Biology having a lower osmotic pressure than a particular fluid. 2》 Physiology of or in a state of abnormally low muscle tone. Derivatives hypotonia noun hypotonicity noun …   English new terms dictionary

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