RNA virus


: a virus (such as a paramyxovirus or a retrovirus) whose genome consists of RNA

Examples of RNA virus in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Your immune system can detect mRNA in endosomes because this is usually a sign of an RNA virus infection – cellular mRNAs normally don’t enter endosomes. Discover Magazine, 8 Jan. 2024 Holmes is famous among virologists for his work on the evolution of RNA viruses (including coronaviruses), his pristinely bald head and his mordant candor. David Quammen, New York Times, 25 July 2023 What about zombies of SARS-CoV-2, the RNA virus that causes COVID? John Yin, Scientific American, 29 July 2022 One of the questions that arises with any single drug treatment of an RNA virus is the level of resistance. William A. Haseltine, Forbes, 13 Apr. 2022 The virus is an RNA virus, meaning that its genetic material is stored in RNA, not DNA. Elizabeth Cohen, CNN, 23 Nov. 2021 West Nile is a type of RNA virus that causes West Nile fever in humans, other animals and birds. Shanti Lerner, The Arizona Republic, 5 Nov. 2021 Coronavirus, which is an RNA virus, can evolve more easily than DNA viruses. Tom Steele, Dallas News, 28 June 2021 This is because Ebola is an RNA virus, a type of virus not known to remain dormant in the system like the one that causes herpes, Angela Rasmussen, a virologist at Georgetown University, told Science Magazine. Annalisa Merelli, Quartz, 15 Mar. 2021

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'RNA virus.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

1963, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of RNA virus was in 1963

Dictionary Entries Near RNA virus

Cite this Entry

“RNA virus.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/RNA%20virus. Accessed 19 Apr. 2024.

Medical Definition

RNA virus

: a virus (as a paramyxovirus or a retrovirus) whose genome consists of RNA
Hepatitis C remains largely a mystery; it is one of the RNA viruses, which are less well understood than are DNA viruses, and it has defied efforts to grow it in a test tube.Nancy Shute, U.S. News & World Report
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