Biology Prefixes and Suffixes: Derm- or Dermis-

Skin Cells
This image shows squamous cells from the surface of the skin. These are flat, keratinized, dead cells that are continuously sloughed off and replaced with new cells from below. Science Photo Library/Getty Images

The affix derm comes from the Greek derma, which means skin or hide. Dermis is a variant form of derm, and both mean skin or covering.

Words Beginning With (Derm-)

Derma (derm-a): The word part derma is a variant of dermis, meaning skin. It is commonly used to indicate a skin disorder such as in scleroderma (extreme hardness of skin) and xenoderma (extremely dry skin).

Dermabrasion (derm-abrasion): Dermabrasion is a type of surgical skin treatment performed to remove the outer layers of skin. It is used to treat scars and wrinkles.

Dermatitis (dermat-itis): This is a general term for inflammation of the skin that is characteristic of a number of skin conditions. Dermatitis is a form of eczema.

Dermatogen (dermat-ogen): The term dermatogen may refer to the antigen of a particular skin disease or to a layer of plant cells thought to give rise to the plant epidermis.

Dermatology (dermat-ology): Dermatology is the area of medicine devoted to the study of the skin and skin disorders.

Dermatome (dermat-ome): Dermatome is a portion of skin containing nerve fibers from a single, posterior spinal root. Human skin has many skin zones or dermatomes. This term is also the name of a surgical instrument used for obtaining thin sections of skin for grafting.

Dermatophyte (dermato-phyte): A parasitic fungus that causes skin infections, such as ringworm, is called a dermatophyte. They metabolize keratin in skin, hair, and nails.

Dermatoid (derma-toid): This term refers to something that is skin-like or resembles skin.

Dermatosis (dermat-osis): Dermatosis is the general term for any type of disease that affects the skin, excluding those that cause inflammation.

Dermis (derm-is): The dermis is the vascular inner layer of the skin. It lies between the epidermis and hypodermis skin layers.

Words Ending With (-Derm)

Ectoderm (ecto-derm): Ectoderm is the outer germ layer of a developing embryo that forms skin and nervous tissue.

Endoderm (endo-derm): The inner germ layer of a developing embryo that forms the lining of the digestive and respiratory tracts is the endoderm.

Exoderm (exo-derm): Another name for ectoderm is exoderm.

Mesoderm (meso-derm): The mesoderm is the middle germ layer of a developing embryo that forms connective tissues such as muscle, bone, and blood.

Pachyderm (pachy-derm): A pachyderm is a large mammal with very thick skin, such as an elephant or hippopotamus.

Periderm (peri-derm): The outer protective plant tissue layer that surrounds roots and stems is called the periderm.

Phelloderm (phello-derm): Phelloderm is the thin layer of plant tissue, consisting of parenchyma cells, that forms a secondary cortex in woody plants.

Placoderm (placo-derm): This is the name of a prehistoric fish with plated skin around the head and thorax. The plated skin gave the appearance of armor.

Words Ending With (-Dermis)

Epidermis (epi-dermis): The epidermis is the outermost layer of the skin, composed of epithelial tissue. This layer of skin provides a protective barrier and serves as the first line of defense against potential pathogens.

Hypodermis (hypo-dermis): The hypodermis is the innermost layer of the skin, composed of fat and adipose tissue. It insulates the body and cushions and protects internal organs.

Rhizodermis (rhizo-dermis): The outer layer of cells in plant roots is called the rhizodermis.