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(1) The state of being turgid; the rigid or fullness state of a cell due to high water content as a result of differing solute concentrations between a semipermeable membrane.

(2) The pressure produced by a solution against the semipermeable membrane enclosing the cell due to osmotic pressure differences between the inside and outside of the cell.


Turgor is manifested in blood vessels, capillaries, and plant or animal cells. It plays a role in cell expansion and certain movements such as the closing or opening of stomata.It is what makes living plant tissue rigid. Loss of turgor, resulting from the loss of water from plant cells, causes flowers and leaves to wilt.

Word origin: Late Latin, from Latin turgēre, to be swollen.

Related terms: turgor pressure.