Definition of receptor in English:


Translate receptor into Spanish


  • 1Physiology
    An organ or cell able to respond to light, heat, or other external stimulus and transmit a signal to a sensory nerve.

    ‘the retina of the octopus has up to 20 million light receptors’
    • ‘In the special sense organs, such as the eye and the ear, highly specialized receptors respond to light and sound.’
    • ‘Our own skin contains a battery of touch receptors that produce nerve signals when pressed.’
    • ‘However, they have some ability to sense light through receptors in the epidermis.’
    • ‘All are viewed dispassionately, the heart as a pump, the brain as a network of neural tissues, the eye as a receptor of visual stimuli.’
    • ‘But sharks also detect their prey with sensory receptors that run along their sides.’
    • ‘In the sea, the krill schools use their highly developed sensory receptors to find food.’
    1. 1.1A region of tissue, or a molecule in a cell membrane, which responds specifically to a particular neurotransmitter, hormone, antigen, or other substance.
      ‘when viruses succeed in binding to cell membrane receptors they still have to enter the cell before they can replicate’
      • ‘When the neurotransmitter binds with the receptor, the next cell responds accordingly.’
      • ‘Hormones work by docking with a specific receptor on a cell, which then responds by turning on genes.’
      • ‘Finally, the presence of a specific receptor in the target tissue is required for a hormone to have its effect.’
      • ‘Cells receive their instructions from the body through hormones and neurotransmitters that bind to receptors on their surface.’
      • ‘The interaction of hormones and their associated receptors is highly specific.’
      • ‘The neurotransmitter and receptor are specific to each other, like a lock and key.’
      • ‘They can also alter circulating estrogen and androgen levels and can affect hormone receptors.’
      • ‘Platelet membranes bear a higher density of receptors per surface area than any other blood cell.’
      • ‘The heaviest people in his study had fewer dopamine receptors than the lightest.’



/rēˈseptər/ /riˈsɛptər/


Early 20th century coined in German from Latin receptor, from recept- ‘taken back’, from the verb recipere (see receive).