from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. The precursor or latent form of a virus that is capable of being integrated into the genetic material of a host cell and being replicated with it.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A virus genome, such as HIV, that integrates itself into the DNA of a host cell so as to be passively replicated along with the host genome.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. cDNA copy of the RNA genome of a retrovirus; the genetic material of a virus as incorporated into and able to replicate with the genome of a host cell


Sorry, no etymologies found.


  • This DNA copy, called a provirus, makes RNA copies, and the virus is regenerated, phoenixlike, to form new viruses.

    The Emperor of All Maladies

  • This DNA, known as the provirus, then integrates itself into the host cell's chromosomes.

    Aids The Next Ten Years

  • Opportunity No. 3 arises shortly after the provirus (the integrated viral DNA) starts running off RNA copies of itself.

    Aids The Next Ten Years

  • The trouble begins when the provirus starts directing enzymes in the host cell to produce new strands of viral RNA.

    Aids The Next Ten Years

  • Often this results in permanent provirus status and incorporation to the genome.

    Of Prions and People - The Panda's Thumb

  • The point that we are making is that we are in the beginning of an epidemic stemming from a provirus in our genomes.


  • SV40 (6), the viral DNA becomes a provirus, i.e. it establishes permanent, covalent bonds with the cellular DNA.

    Renato Dulbecco - Nobel Lecture

  • The provirus thus became a tool for studying regulation of DNA transcription in animal cells.

    Renato Dulbecco - Nobel Lecture

  • The demonstration that viral DNA is integrated in the cells in conjunction with the finding that the provirus is transcribed into messenger RNA (7) hundreds of generations after the establishment of a transformed clone, made the hit-and-run hypothesis unlikely and supported a continuing role of viral gene functions in determining transformation.

    Renato Dulbecco - Nobel Lecture

  • It explained the persistence of the transformed state in the cell clone deriving from a transformed cell, since the provirus replicates with the cellular

    Renato Dulbecco - Nobel Lecture


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