AskDefine | Define stylet

Dictionary Definition

stylet n : small needle-like appendage; especially the feeding organ of a tardigrade

User Contributed Dictionary

English

Etymology

From stylet, from stilet, from Old stiletto

Noun

  1. A slender medical probe or device.
  2. A stiff, slender organ of an animal.
  3. A style of a plant's flower.
  4. A stiletto or poniard.
  5. An engraving tool.

Extensive Definition

The stylet or stomatostyle, is the primitive mouth-parts of some nematodes and some nemerteans. It actually presents as a hardened protrusible opening to the stomach.
The stylet is adapted for the piercing of cell walls, providing the operative organism with access to the nutrients contained within the prey cell.
The mouth parts of tardigrades and aphids are also called stylets.
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