acantho-, acanth-, -acanth, -acanths, -acanthid, -acanthous

(Greek: used either as a prefix or as a suffix; pointed appendages; spine, spiny; thorn, thorny)

acanth (s) (noun), acanths (pl)
1. A herbaceous plant of the genus Acanthus: The acanth is a native plant to the Mediterranean area, but is also grown as a decorative and attractive plant, having big spiny foliage with pointed flowers that are white or purplish in color.
2. A decoration or trimming that has been carved or engraved in the shape of the leaves of the Mediterranean plant: An acanth was placed on a Corinthian column of the capital.
acantha (s) (noun), acanthas (pl)
1. A pointed spiny part of a structure: The sharp projection of a vertebra is termed the acantha.
2. The spine: The vertebrae in a person is called the acantha because of the many pointed segments.
3. In biology, a spike-like structure or spiny protrusion on a plant or animal: A wild rosebush has many acanthas, or thorns, that are quite similar to needles.

Bill read in his book about acanthas on insects being sharp projections, normally as a one-celled epidermal growth and lacking cells for the senses.

acanthaceous (adjective), more acanthaceous, most acanthaceous
Regarding something bearing prickles or spines; having spinous processes: Some plants, as with rosebushes or boysenberry bushes. are considered to be acanthaceous!
acanthamebiasis, acanthamoebiasis (s) (noun), acanthamebiases; acanthamoebiases (pl)
Infection by free-living soil amebae of the genus Acanthamoeba: Acanthamebiasis may result in a necrotizing dermal or tissue invasion, or a fulminating and usually fatal primary amebic meningoencephalitis.
acanthamoeba (s) (noun), acanthamoebae (pl)
A microscopic organism, an amoeba of the genus Amoebae, found in soil, dust and fresh water: The free-living acanthamoeba can be found in sewage, brackish water, sea water, in heating, venting, and in air conditioner units, humidifiers, and in dialysis units.

There are two specific species, which are the trophozoite, metabolically active, and a cyst, which is dormant and stress-resistant. These species can cause the infection termed acanthamebiasis.

The acanthamoeba does not produce a flagellate stage. Its organisms are pathogens for several infections in humans and have been found in the eye, bone, brain, and respiratory tract.

They can enter the skin through a cut, wound, or through the nostrils and, once inside the body, can travel to the lungs and through the bloodstream to other parts of the body, especially to the central nervous system (the brain and spinal cord). Through improper storage, handling, and disinfection of contact lenses, acanthamoebae can enter the eye and cause an infection there.

A particularly dire infection caused by acanthamoebae, called granulomatous amebic encephalitis, is characterized by a headache, stiff neck, nausea, vomiting, confusion, loss of balance, seizures, and coma that can progress over several weeks and end in death.

acanthesthesia (s) (noun), acanthesthesias (pl)
A painful sensory perception as if being stuck with sharp points: In neurology, acanthesthesia is felt as a terribly sharp pain even with a soft touch, but the victim feels it as if he or she is being stuck with a sharp object, such as with a pin or a needle.
acanthine (adjective), more acanthine; most acanthine
Pertaining to the Acanthus plants: Jane viewed a photo of the thorny, prickly and spiny acanthine flora which was native to warm and tropical regions and whose flowers produced nectar attracting butterflies.

In popular use, the name is chiefly native to the shores of the Mediterranean, and cultivated in England, and is celebrated among the Greeks and Romans for the elegance of its leaves.

acanthite (s) (noun) (no pl)
A mineral form of silver sulphide: Acanthite has the same make-up as argentite, but has a crystalline form with slender, pointed prisms.
acanthocarpous (adjective), more acanthocarpous; most acanthocarpous
Pertaining to fruit that is covered with spines: In her botany book, Anita read about acanthocarpous flora, a member of the family Acanthaceae, having the reproductive structure enveloped with a prickly growth.
Acanthocephala (proper noun)
A class of phylum of extended wormlike parasites; spiny-headed worms: Jack read about the Acanthocephala whose members use their retractile proboscis with hooked spines to attach themselves to the intestines of vertebrates.
acanthocephalan, acanthocephalid (s) (noun), acanthocephalans; acanthocephalids (pl)
A spiney-headed worm of the phylum Acanthocephala: The acanthocephalan lives parasitically in the intestines of its host, the vertebrate, and is characterized by a cylindrical, retractile proboscis that bears many rows of hooked spines.
acanthocephaliasis (s) (noun) acanthocephaliases (pl)
A disease resulting by an infection with intestinal worms of the phylum Acanthocephala: The thorny-headed worms are responsible for causing acanthocephaliasis, occurring primarily in fish and rodents, bur occasionally parasitic in humans.
acanthocephalous (adjective) (not comparable)
Pertaining to a spiny head: In Chuck's zoology book, he read that acanthocephalous referred to the needle-like structures on the proboscis of the acanthocephalan worm.
acanthocladous (adjective), more acanthociadous, most acanthociadous
A plant having thorny branches: When finding out more information about her rosebushes, Jenny found out that they all had acanthociadous or spiny stems, sprigs, or shoots.
acanthocyte (s) (noun), acanthocytes (pl)
An abnormally shaped red blood cell that has a small number of spurlike projections of protoplasm; spur cell: Acanthocytes are observed in blood films taken from certain people with hemolytic disorders or following splenectomy.