hem·​ag·​glu·​ti·​nin ˌhē-mə-ˈglü-tə-nən How to pronounce hemagglutinin (audio)
: an agglutinin (such as an antibody or viral capsid protein) that causes hemagglutination

Examples of hemagglutinin in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web The virus would also need to tweak its hemagglutinin, the protein on its surface that locks onto host cells to initiate an infection. Andrew Joseph, STAT, 11 Aug. 2023 With 18 hemagglutinin and 11 neuraminidase proteins known, the permutations and combinations are many, leading to a high number of variants. Larry Brilliant, Foreign Affairs, 20 Dec. 2022 To gain access to a host’s cells, influenza uses its own viral glycoprotein, hemagglutinin (H). Quanta Magazine, 25 Feb. 2020 Viral code The Hs and Ns refer to hemagglutinin (Ha or H) and neuraminidase (Na or N), respectively, which are both viral molecules that hang on the outside of viral particles. Beth Mole, Ars Technica, 10 Dec. 2019 Krammer used a novel assay to measure the hemagglutinin stalk antibodies. Debbie Ponchner, Scientific American, 3 June 2019 Current flu vaccines induce the production of antibodies that recognize the hemagglutinin head and inhibit its ability to mediate viral entry into a cell. Debbie Ponchner, Scientific American, 3 June 2019 Scientists have been sequencing hemagglutinin genes from flu seasons for more than 40 years. Quanta Magazine, 17 July 2014 Those harmful mutations make hemagglutinin less stable and thus less able to open up cells for invasion. Quanta Magazine, 17 July 2014

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

Word History


International Scientific Vocabulary

First Known Use

circa 1903, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of hemagglutinin was circa 1903

Dictionary Entries Near hemagglutinin

Cite this Entry

“Hemagglutinin.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/hemagglutinin. Accessed 23 Jun. 2024.

Medical Definition


hem·​ag·​glu·​ti·​nin ˌhē-mə-ˈglüt-ᵊn-ən How to pronounce hemagglutinin (audio)
variants also hemoagglutinin or chiefly British haemagglutinin also haemoagglutinin
: an agglutinin (as an antibody or viral capsid protein) that causes hemagglutination
abbreviation HA
compare leukoagglutinin

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