A horizontal area where the atmospheric pressure is less than it is in adjacent areas. Since air always moves from areas of high pressure to areas of low pressure, air from these adjacent areas of higher pressure will move toward the low pressure area to equalize the pressure. This inflow of air toward the low will be affected by the Earth's rotation (see Coriolis force) and will cause the air to spiral inward in a counterclockwise direction in the northern hemisphere. The air eventually rises near the center of the low, causing cloudiness and precipitation.
The air in a low rotates in a counterclockwise direction in the Northern Hemisphere, and in a clockwise direction in the Southern Hemisphere. Low-pressure cells are called cyclones. Source: NASA (http://earthobservatory.nasa.gov/Glossary)