inactivate

verb

in·​ac·​ti·​vate (ˌ)i-ˈnak-tə-ˌvāt How to pronounce inactivate (audio)
inactivated; inactivating; inactivates

transitive verb

: to make inactive
chemicals to inactivate viruses
inactivation noun

Example Sentences

Recent Examples on the Web The effort marks the second time the company, Intellia Therapeutics, has used in vivo delivery of CRISPR to inactivate a gene directly inside a person’s body. Byjocelyn Kaiser, science.org, 16 Sep. 2022 Antibodies are proteins that bind to virus particles to inactivate them. Dr. Genevieve Yang, ABC News, 3 June 2022 Currently, state election officials make checks daily — but not purges — to inactivate such voters. Molly Beck, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 12 May 2022 Unlike scientists in a lab, the human body in attack mode isn’t trying to inactivate viruses just so. NBC News, 30 Jan. 2022 The drug, called ensovibep, is an antiviral medicine designed specifically to inactivate SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, with extremely high potency and no known off-target effects. News Service Of Florida, orlandosentinel.com, 11 Jan. 2022 In a laboratory, one study published in the Journal of Medical Virology suggested that certain mouthwashes can inactivate human coronaviruses. Joshua Cohen, Forbes, 10 Dec. 2021 The relatively limited research related to SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, shows that similar ultraviolet dosages can inactivate it, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Kayla Dwyer, The Indianapolis Star, 15 Nov. 2021 The technology fits in the buses' existing HVAC systems, using an air filter and UVC light — the shortest wavelength, highest energy form of ultraviolet radiation — to inactivate pathogens. Kayla Dwyer, The Indianapolis Star, 15 Nov. 2021 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'inactivate.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

Word History

First Known Use

1906, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of inactivate was in 1906

Dictionary Entries Near inactivate

Cite this Entry

“Inactivate.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/inactivate. Accessed 27 Nov. 2022.

Kids Definition

inactivate

verb

in·​ac·​ti·​vate (ˈ)in-ˈak-tə-ˌvāt How to pronounce inactivate (audio)
: to make inactive
inactivation noun

Medical Definition

inactivate

transitive verb

in·​ac·​ti·​vate (ˈ)in-ˈak-tə-ˌvāt How to pronounce inactivate (audio)
inactivated; inactivating
: to make inactive: as
a
: to destroy certain biological activities of
inactivate the complement of normal serum by heat
b
: to cause (as an infectious agent) to lose disease-producing capacity
inactivate bacteria
inactivation noun
inactivator noun
Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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