Pronunciation: (fī'bur), [key]
1. a fine, threadlike piece, as of cotton, jute, or asbestos.
2. a slender filament: a fiber of platinum.
3. filaments collectively.
4. matter or material composed of filaments: a plastic fiber.
5. something resembling a filament.
6. an essential character, quality, or strength: people of strong moral fiber.
7. Bot.
a. filamentous matter from the bast tissue or other parts of plants, used for industrial purposes.
b. a slender, threadlike root of a plant.
c. a slender, tapered cell which, with like cells, serves to strengthen tissue.
8. Anat., Zool.a slender, threadlike element or cell, as of nerve, muscle, or connective tissue.
9. Nutrition.Also called bulk, dietary fiber, roughage.
a. the structural part of plants and plant products that consists of carbohydrates, as cellulose and pectin, that are wholly or partially indigestible and when eaten stimulate peristalsis in the intestine.
b. food containing a high amount of such carbohydrates, as whole grains, fruits, and vegetables.
10. Chem.See vulcanized fiber.
11. Optics.See optical fiber. Also, esp. Brit.,fibre.

Random House Unabridged Dictionary, Copyright © 1997, by Random House, Inc., on Infoplease.

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