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a combining form meaning "living in the environment specified," used in the formation of compound words: symbiont.
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Origin of -biont

<Greek biount-, variant stem of present participle of bioûn “to live”
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2022


What does -biont mean?

The combining formbiont is used like a suffix meaning “living in an environment.” It is occasionally used in scientific terms, especially in biology.

The form –biont ultimately comes from Greek bioûn, meaning “to live.” The Latin cognate of bioûn is vivere, “to live,” which is the source of words such as survive, vivacity, and vivid. Find out more at our entry for each word.

What are variants of –biont?

Although –biont has no variants, it shares an origin with the combining forms bio and biosis. Want to learn more? Check out our Words That Use articles for bio– and –biosis.

Examples of -biont

An example of a scientific term that features the form –biont is mycobiont, “the fungal component of a lichen.”

The form myco means “fungus,” from Greek mýkēs. The –biont portion of the word means “living in an environment.” Mycobiont literally translates to “living in a fungal environment.”

What are some words that use the combining form –biont?

What are some other forms that –biont may be commonly confused with?

Break it down!

The combining form sapro means “rotten.” With this in mind, what does saprobiont mean?