immunize

verb

im·​mu·​nize ˈi-myə-ˌnīz How to pronounce immunize (audio)
immunized; immunizing; immunizes

transitive verb

: to make (someone or something) immune to something : to provide with protection against or immunity from something
… the investigation has been slowed by the refusal of seven former and current Hughes officials to cooperate unless immunized from prosecution.Andy Pasztor and Rick Wartzman
Budding novelists immunize themselves against rejection by recalling rebuffs endured by even the most successful novelists …Edwin McDowell
specifically : to make (a living organism) immune or resistant to a disease or pathogenic agent especially by inoculation : to create immunity in (as with a vaccine)
Measles can be almost completely controlled when adequate numbers of people within a population are immunized. Scientific American Medicine
immunizing as many citizens as possible before an outbreak makes sense … Shannon Brownlee

Examples of immunize in a Sentence

Many people had to be immunized after being exposed to the disease.
Recent Examples on the Web Measles was eliminated in the United States in 2000, and American children generally must be immunized to attend school. Apoorva Mandavilli, New York Times, 20 Mar. 2024 The Illinois Department of Public Health's Vax Verify tool allows parents to check vaccination records for those immunized in the state from 2007 onward. Aria Bendix, NBC News, 12 Mar. 2024 Some of the gap results from parents unable or unwilling to share records with the schools, and not because their children are not immunized, Dr. Hahn said. Apoorva Mandavilli, New York Times, 20 Mar. 2024 Herd immunity is the portion of the population that must be immunized against an infection to prevent its spread through the community. Brenda Goodman, CNN, 18 Mar. 2024 If one person is infected, up to 90% of people surrounding them will also become infected if they are not immunized. Haadiza Ogwude, The Enquirer, 15 Mar. 2024 In 2010, in the American Needle case, the Supreme Court held that this joint venture structure did not immunize clubs from antitrust scrutiny. Chris Deubert, Forbes, 29 Feb. 2024 The Fed has historically sought to immunize itself from political pressures and didn't comment on Trump's remarks. Rob Wile, NBC News, 13 Feb. 2024 In 2019, America was doing great in terms of measles vaccination—across the country, 95.2 percent of kindergartners were getting immunized, according to the CDC—and yet, in spite of this fantastic progress, measles cases were exploding. Daniel Engber, The Atlantic, 12 Mar. 2024

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'immunize.' 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

1889, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of immunize was in 1889

Dictionary Entries Near immunize

Cite this Entry

“Immunize.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/immunize. Accessed 15 Apr. 2024.

Kids Definition

immunize

verb
im·​mu·​nize ˈim-yə-ˌnīz How to pronounce immunize (audio)
immunized; immunizing
: to make immune
have been immunized against polio

Medical Definition

immunize

transitive verb
im·​mu·​nize
variants also British immunise
immunized also British immunised; immunizing also British immunising
: to make immune

Legal Definition

immunize

transitive verb
im·​mu·​nize ˈi-myə-ˌnīz How to pronounce immunize (audio)
immunized; immunizing
: to grant immunity to
the ultimately ill-fated effort to immunize state judges from the burdens of the federal income taxJ. K. Owens
immunization noun
Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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