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Any of the bony or cartilaginous segments that make up the spinal column and that have a short more or less cylindrical body whose ends articulate by pads of elastic or cartilaginous tissue with those of adjacent vertebrae and a bony arch that encloses the spinal cord.

Definition from: Merriam-Webster's Medical DictionaryThis link leads to a site outside Genetics Home Reference. by Merriam-Webster Inc.

See also Understanding Medical Terminology.

Published: November 23, 2015