Definition of monomorphic in English:


Pronunciation /ˌmänəˈmôrfik/ /ˌmɑnəˈmɔrfɪk/


  • 1Biology
    Having or existing in only one form.

    ‘The aromatic group had a high proportion of monomorphic loci suggestive of a severe or recent bottleneck.’
    • ‘Loci are commonly chosen because they were known to be polymorphic in the population studied, while monomorphic loci were not genotyped or discarded from analysis.’
    • ‘Three of the loci were monomorphic in all populations.’
    • ‘Roughly one-half of the microsatellites they isolated in one species were monomorphic in the other and have presumably lost their ability to mutate.’
    • ‘The type species of Pleuronectites is not monomorphic but shows a substantial range of variation from its earliest to latest occurrences in the Muschelkalk of the Germanic Basin.’
    1. 1.1(of a species or population) showing little or no variation in morphology or phenotype.
      ‘The lesion was a lobulated circumscribed tumor mass composed microscopically of a monomorphic population of ductal cells.’
      • ‘Nevertheless, frequencies of monomorphic populations were homogeneous over zoogeographical regions.’
      • ‘There were also large differences between populations in diversity, some of the populations being monomorphic and some polymorphic.’
      • ‘The exceptionally low content of T. dubius units in some 2603-33 plants closely resembles the monomorphic phenotype often seen in relatively ancient allopolyploids.’
      • ‘The carcinoma consisted of nests of tumor composed of a relatively monomorphic cell population with round nuclei, evenly distributed chromatin, and scanty cytoplasm.’
    2. 1.2(of an animal species) having sexes that are similar in size and appearance.
      ‘Siberian jays are sexually monomorphic with a substantial overlap in size between sexes.’
      • ‘Unlike many socially polygynous species, house wrens are sexually monomorphic; both sexes are a fairly uniform brownish gray.’
      • ‘Many bird species are morphologically monomorphic for external characters that would differentiate the sexes; sex identification in populations is often problematic.’
      • ‘Molecular sexing can provide an added benefit, especially for sexually monomorphic species.’
      • ‘Only the ornament-carrying males were observed for the dimorphic species, while both males and females may have been observed for the monomorphic species.’


Late 19th century from mono-‘single’ + Greek morphē ‘form’.