xeno-, xen-, -xenic, -xenism, -xenist, -xenous, -xeny

(Greek: foreign, foreigner; alien; different; extraneous; strange, stranger; and by extension, guest)

The "x" in xeno- is pronounced "z"; "zeno". Greeks are said to have considered any stranger a "guest" and modern Greek includes xenodocheion a "guest house" or "house for guests" or its modern version of "hotel".

The etymological meaning usually denotes some aspect of a relationship involving guests or visitors of some kind.

xenophobia (s) (noun), xenophobias (pl)
1. An irrational fear or hatred of being around foreigners or strangers and of unfamiliar situations: When people are possessed with xenophobias, they usually cannot tolerate having anything to do with others or with situations that they have no knowledge or experiences with.

Xenophobias often involve dreads of things that are different from the normal habits or social environments of people who have such anxieties.

2. Etymology: from Greek xenos, "strange, foreign" + phobos), "fear, dread".
A fear or hatred of foreigners.
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An abnormal fear of strangers.
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xenophobic (adjective), more xenophobic, most xenophobic
Descriptive of someone who has a dread of being around strangers: When Ray's wife suggested that they should go on a trip to France and England to visit friends, he rejected the idea because, as a xenophobic person, he had a terrible fear of being around so many foreign people.

When the couple from outer space saw the unfamiliar baby, they were totally xenophobic and the shock they had was impossible to describe.

A strange baby born to couple from outer space.
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A strange speech defect marked by an alteration in accent and intonation.
Inflammation caused, or excited, by the presence of a foreign body in the eye.
Xenopus (s), Xenopi (pl)
An African water frog which is native to southern Africa.

From Greek xeno-, "stranger, foreigner" + pous "foot".

1. An older term for pica or an appetite for and the eating of matter which is not fit as food for humans; such as, sand, clay, or paint.
2. An eating disorder manifested by a craving to ingest any material not fit for food, including starch, clay, ashes, toy balloons, crayons, cotton, grass, cigarette butts, soap, twigs, wood, paper, metal, or plaster.
  • This condition is seen in pregnancy, chlorosis, hysteria, helminthiasis, and certain psychotic situations.
  • It may also be associated with iron-deficiency anemia.
  • The importance of this condition, the etiology (cause) of which is unknown, stems from the toxicity of ingested material (e.g., paint that contains lead) or from ingesting materials in place of essential nutrients.
  • The inclusion of compulsive ingestion of nonfood and food items; such as, licorice, croutons, chewing gum, coffee grounds, or oyster shells as examples of pica is controversial.
The lowest water saturation rate with decomposing organic substances (saprobity) in any body of water.
A “strange-ankle lizard” from Late Cretaceous Argentina. Named by Argentinian paleontologists Rubén Martinez, Olga Giménez, Rodriguez, and Graciela Bochatey in 1986.
Applied to mineral deposits formed by hydrothermal action at high temperatures but at a shallow depth.
1. The surgical removal of an organ or tissue from one species and transplanting it into a member of a different species, for example: the use of a baboon heart in a human being.
2. The surgical transfer of cells, tissues, or especially whole organs from one species to another.

The rationale for xenotransplantation is the short supply of human organs for transplantation.

The first to show that nonhuman organs could be transplanted to humans and function for a significant period of time was Dr. Keith Reemtsma (1925-2000).

At Tulane University in New Orleans, Dr. Reemtsma in 1963 and 1964 gave chimpanzee kidneys to five patients in the first chimpanzee-to-human transplants. The recipients died (of infection) from eight to sixty-three days after receiving a chimpanzee kidney.

Then, in 1964, Reemtsma transplanted a kidney from a chimpanzee to a 23-year-old teacher. She lived with it for nine months until succumbing to overwhelming infection.

Xenotransplantation is synonymous with "cross-species transplantation".

Related "foreign, strange" word families: allotrio-; barbar-.