noun, plural vi·rus·es.
Origin of virus
Examples from the Web for virus
He became delirious, his heartbeat grew ragged, his blood teemed with the virus, and his lungs, liver and kidneys began to fail.
By May 27, five people had succumbed to the virus and 16 more were infected.Jail Threats for Sierra Leone Ebola Victims’ Families|Abby Haglage|December 10, 2014|DAILY BEAST
The fact that the virus is still alive has sustained many safety concerns, both rational and irrational, about its use.Powdered Measles Vaccine Could Be Huge for Developing World|Kent Sepkowitz|December 2, 2014|DAILY BEAST
In some ways, the rapid spread of the virus there should not be surprising.
When the state of emergency was issued Aug. 7, some 300 Liberians had been infected with the virus.
This virus has also been found to be active in the carcass of an affected animal 24 hours after death.Special Report on Diseases of the Horse|United States Department of Agriculture
We are only warming into new life and strength this virus of Rebellion, to have it recoil upon ourselves.Three Years in the Federal Cavalry|Willard Glazier
In handling contaminated subjects the slightest excoriation or scratch of the skin is sufficient to allow the virus to enter.Louis Pasteur|Ren Vallery-Radot
The fever and the virus that was in my blood put me in danger of my life, and on the third day I was in extremis.The Memoires of Casanova, Complete|Jacques Casanova de Seingalt
The bite is nearly always fatal, as the virus acts so rapidly upon the system.The Hilltop Boys on Lost Island|Cyril Burleigh
British Dictionary definitions for virus
noun plural -ruses
Word Origin for virus
Word Origin and History for virus
late 14c., "venomous substance," from Latin virus "poison, sap of plants, slimy liquid," probably from PIE root *weis- "to melt away, to flow," used of foul or malodorous fluids, with specialization in some languages to "poisonous fluid" (cf. Sanskrit visam "poison," visah "poisonous;" Avestan vish- "poison;" Latin viscum "sticky substance, birdlime;" Greek ios "poison," ixos "mistletoe, birdlime; Old Church Slavonic višnja "cherry;" Old Irish fi "poison;" Welsh gwy "fluid, water," gwyar "blood"). Main modern meaning "agent that causes infectious disease" first recorded 1728. The computer sense is from 1972.
Medicine definitions for virus
n. pl. vi•rus•es
Science definitions for virus
Culture definitions for virus (1 of 3)
Microorganisms consisting of DNA and RNA molecules wrapped in a protective coating of proteins. Viruses are the most primitive form of life. They depend on other living cells for their reproduction and growth. (See under “Medicine and Health.”)
Culture definitions for virus (2 of 3)
A minute organism that consists of a core of nucleic acid surrounded by protein. Viruses, which are so small that a special kind of microscope is needed to view them, can grow and reproduce only inside living cells. (See under “Life Sciences.”)
Culture definitions for virus (3 of 3)
See computer virus.