[ bak-teer-ee-uh-feyj ]

  1. any of a group of viruses that infect specific bacteria, usually causing their disintegration or dissolution.

Origin of bacteriophage

First recorded in 1920–25; from French bactériophage; see origin at bacterio-, -phage

Other words from bacteriophage

  • bac·te·ri·o·phag·ic [bak-teer-ee-uh-faj-ik, -fey-jik], /bækˌtɪər i əˈfædʒ ɪk, -ˈfeɪ dʒɪk/, bac·te·ri·oph·a·gous [bak-teer-ee-of-uh-guhs], /bækˌtɪər iˈɒf ə gəs/, adjective
  • bac·te·ri·oph·a·gy [bak-teer-ee-of-uh-jee], /bækˌtɪər iˈɒf ə dʒi/, noun

Words Nearby bacteriophage Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use bacteriophage in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for bacteriophage


/ (bækˈtɪərɪəˌfeɪdʒ) /

  1. a virus that is parasitic in a bacterium and multiplies within its host, which is destroyed when the new viruses are released: Often shortened to: phage

Derived forms of bacteriophage

  • bacteriophagic (bækˌtɪərɪəˈfædʒɪk), adjective
  • bacteriophagous (bækˌtɪərɪˈɒfəɡəs), adjective

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Scientific definitions for bacteriophage


[ băk-tîrē-ə-fāj′ ]

  1. A virus that infects and destroys bacterial cells.

The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.