polymerase

noun
po·ly·mer·ase | \pə-ˈli-mə-rās; ˈpä-lə-mə-ˌrās, -ˌrāz \

Definition of polymerase 

: any of several enzymes that catalyze the formation of DNA or RNA from precursor substances in the presence of preexisting DNA or RNA acting as a template — compare dna polymerase, rna polymerase

Examples of polymerase in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

That’s prompted dreams of reengineering polymerases to write new DNA. Robert F. Service, Science | AAAS, "New technique could help scientists create a gene in just 1 day," 18 June 2018 Thus cancers that have mutations in the BRCA1 and BRCA2 genes rely heavily on a backup DNA repair mechanism which uses proteins called poly-ADP-ribose polymerases (PARPs). The Economist, "Knives, beams, drugs and antibodiesToday’s anti-cancer tools are ever better wielded," 14 Sep. 2017 The switch kicks in to stop the spiral from unzipping too far and lets the polymerase catch up. NBC News, "First-of-Its-Kind DNA Video Raises Big Question About Molecule of Heredity," 20 June 2017 The case went cold, but in 2001, authorities were able to review old evidence using a technology called PCR, or polymerase chain reaction. Channon Hodge, CNN, "The shifting science of DNA in the courtroom," 9 June 2017 The simplest, known as a polymerase chain reaction test, can find traces of the virus in the blood up until about a week after infection, and in urine for about 10 days. Marc Santora, New York Times, "As Zika Threat Grows in U.S., Testing Lags for a Vulnerable Group," 17 June 2016 Until now, scientists believed that the polymerases on the two strands coordinated their movement somehow to ensure that one didn’t get too far ahead of the other. NBC News, "First-of-Its-Kind DNA Video Raises Big Question About Molecule of Heredity," 20 June 2017 One type is called a polymerase chain reaction, or P.C.R., designed to detect the active virus in blood and urine. Roni Caryn Rabin, New York Times, "In Florida, Pregnant Women Cover Up and Stay Inside Amid Zika Fears AUG. 19, 2016," 19 Sep. 2016

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

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First Known Use of polymerase

1948, in the meaning defined above

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21 Aug 2018

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The first known use of polymerase was in 1948

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More Definitions for polymerase

polymerase

noun
po·ly·mer·ase | \pə-ˈlim-ər-ās; ˈpä-lə-mə-ˌrās, -ˌrāz \

Medical Definition of polymerase 

: any of several enzymes that catalyze the formation of DNA or RNA from precursor substances in the presence of preexisting DNA or RNA acting as a template

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