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May 15 2019 19

Labile is an adjective that means easily altered or unstable.

Labile originates from the Latin word labi (LAH bee) which means ‘fall’ or ‘slip.’ This is why in chemistry our word of the day is often used to mean ‘easily broken down’ or ‘displaced.’ In everyday use, labile may refer to a person’s health or their emotions, as in: It’s been a rough year for Randal. After all the ups and downs he’s experienced, his state of mind has become quite labile.