upstream

adverb or adjective up·stream \ ˈəp-ˈstrēm \
|Updated on: 12 Jun 2018
1 : in the direction opposite to the flow of a stream
2 : in or to a position within the production stream closer to manufacturing processes
  • make most of its money upstream, selling cheap crude … to refineries
  • —John Quirt
3 biochemistry : toward the beginning of a series of cellular processes : preceding a linked molecular event occurring in a sequence
  • Many signaling pathways possess intrinsic negative feedback by which a downstream event in a pathway turns off an upstream event.
  • —Harvey Lodish et al.

Recent Examples of upstream from the Web

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

First Known Use of upstream

1681

in the meaning defined at sense 1

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UPSTREAM Defined for English Language Learners

upstream

  • : in the direction opposite to the flow in a stream, river, etc. : toward the source of a stream, river, etc.


UPSTREAM Defined for Kids

upstream

adverb up·stream \ ˈəp-ˈstrēm \
: at or toward the beginning of a stream
  • She rowed upstream.

Medical Dictionary

upstream

adverb or adjective up·stream \ ˈəp-ˈstrēm \
1 : in a direction along a molecule of DNA or RNA opposite to that in which transcription and translation take place and toward the end having a phosphate group attached to the position labeled 5′ in the terminal nucleotide
  • … stretches of DNA upstream of genes—are known as promoters.
  • —Matt RidleyTime2 June 2003
— compare downstream 1
2 : toward the beginning of series of cellular processes : preceding a linked molecular event occurring in a sequence
  • It's equally important to focus on additional mechanisms that are upstream of amyloid formation and mechanisms downstream that are involved in the actual degenerative processes within neurons.
  • —Marc Tessier-Lavignequoted in Science17 Sept. 2010


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