noun, plural: cisterns
(general) A reservoir or tank for storing water, especially a tank for holding rainwater for later use.
(cell biology) A space containing fluid, such as those occurring between the membranes of flattened sacs of the Golgi apparatus and the endoplasmic reticulum, also between the two membranes of the nuclear envelope.
(anatomy) A reservoir or a closed space filled with body fluid like chyle, lymph, or cerebrospinal fluid.
In neuroanatomy, cisterns refer to any of the openings in the subarachnoid space of the brain filled with cerebrospinal fluid. Some of the major subarachnoid cisternae are:
- cisterna cerebromedullaris or cerebellomedullary cistern
- cisterna pontis or pontine cistern
- cisterna interpeduncularis or interpeduncular cistern
- cisterna ambiens or ambient cistern
Word origin: Latin cisterna from cista (“‘box’”), from Ancient Greek kistē, “‘box’”.
Other derived terms:
- basal cistern
- chyle cistern