spongiform encephalopathy

noun
spon·​gi·​form encephalopathy | \ ˈspən-ji-ˌfȯrm- How to pronounce spongiform encephalopathy (audio) \

Definition of spongiform encephalopathy

: any of various degenerative diseases of the brain characterized by the development of porous spongelike lesions in brain tissue and by deterioration in neurological functioning specifically : prion disease

Examples of spongiform encephalopathy in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web These spongiform encephalopathies serve as a negative selection pressure against cannibalism. National Geographic, "Cannibalism—the Ultimate Taboo—Is Surprisingly Common," 19 Feb. 2017 By consuming meat from these cows, the spongiform encephalopathy disease was transmitted to humans. National Geographic, "Cannibalism—the Ultimate Taboo—Is Surprisingly Common," 19 Feb. 2017

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

First Known Use of spongiform encephalopathy

1960, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for spongiform encephalopathy

spongiform resembling a sponge, from Latin spongia + English -iform

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about spongiform encephalopathy

Time Traveler for spongiform encephalopathy

Time Traveler

The first known use of spongiform encephalopathy was in 1960

See more words from the same year

Statistics for spongiform encephalopathy

Cite this Entry

“Spongiform encephalopathy.” The Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/spongiform%20encephalopathy. Accessed 24 January 2020.

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for spongiform encephalopathy

spongiform encephalopathy

noun

Medical Definition of spongiform encephalopathy

: any of various degenerative diseases of the brain characterized by the development of porous spongelike lesions in brain tissue and by deterioration in neurological functioning specifically : prion disease

More from Merriam-Webster on spongiform encephalopathy

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about spongiform encephalopathy

Comments on spongiform encephalopathy

What made you want to look up spongiform encephalopathy? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

a feeling of well-being or elation

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Intact Latin Quiz

  • roman tablet
  • What did focus mean in Latin?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

TAKE THE QUIZ
Syn City

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!