Also found in: Thesaurus, Medical, Encyclopedia.


A dormant state induced by drought in which an organism becomes almost completely dehydrated and reduces its metabolic activity to an imperceptible level, occurring in small invertebrates such as tardigrades and in some plant seeds.

an·hy′dro·bi·ot′ic (-ŏt′ĭk) adj.
References in periodicals archive ?
Typical processes used are lyophilization and anhydrobiosis.
The core technology is designed for use in preserving complex biological samples and assays and is based on the principles of anhydrobiosis ("life without water"), a natural mechanism that allows multicellular organisms to survive extreme environments.
Moreover, the presence of trehalose protects membranes from morphological damage during drying allowing organisms to survive high levels of desiccation, a condition known as anhydrobiosis (Crowe et al.
The process has been used to plan for an experiment to determine the water content of recently discovered species of flatworms that apparently go through anhydrobiosis to survive desiccation.