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[muh-tas-tuh-sis] /məˈtæs tə sɪs/

noun, plural metastases
[muh-tas-tuh-seez] /məˈtæs təˌsiz/ (Show IPA)

(def 3).
Rhetoric. a rapid transition, as from one subject to another.
Physics. a change in position or orbit of an elementary particle.
noun (pl) -ses (-ˌsiːz)
(pathol) the spreading of a disease, esp cancer cells, from one part of the body to another
a transformation or change, as in rhetoric, from one point to another
a rare word for metabolism

1570s, originally in rhetoric, from Late Latin metastasis “transition,” from Greek metastasis “a removing, removal; migration; a changing; change, revolution,” from methistanai “to remove, change,” from meta- “over, across” (see meta-) + histanai “to place, cause to stand,” from PIE root *sta- “to stand” (see stet). A rhetorical term in Late Latin for “a sudden transition in subjects,” medical use for “shift of disease from one part of the body to another” dates from 1660s in English. Related: Metastatic.

metastasis me·tas·ta·sis (mə-tās’tə-sĭs)
n. pl. me·tas·ta·ses (-sēz’)

met’a·stat’ic (mět’ə-stāt’ĭk) adj.
A cancerous tumor formed by transmission of malignant cells from a primary cancer located elsewhere in the body.

metastasize verb


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