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A virus that infects and lyses certain bacteria.

bac·te′ri·o·phag′ic (-făj′ĭk) adj.
bac·te′ri·oph′a·gy (-ŏf′ə-jē) n.


(Microbiology) a virus that is parasitic in a bacterium and multiplies within its host, which is destroyed when the new viruses are released. Often shortened to: phage
bacteriophagic adj
bacteriophagous adj


(bækˈtɪər i əˌfeɪdʒ)

any of a group of viruses that infect specific bacteria, usu. causing their disintegration. Also called phage.
[1920–25; < French]
bac•te`ri•o•phag′ic (-ˈfædʒ ɪk, -ˈfeɪ dʒɪk) bac•te`ri•oph′a•gous (-ˈɒf ə gəs) adj.
bac•te`ri•oph′a•gy (-dʒi) n.


A virus that infects and destroys the cells of bacteria. Also called phage.
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.bacteriophage - a virus that is parasitic (reproduces itself) in bacteria; "phage uses the bacterium's machinery and energy to produce more phage until the bacterium is destroyed and phage is released to invade surrounding bacteria"
virus - (virology) ultramicroscopic infectious agent that replicates itself only within cells of living hosts; many are pathogenic; a piece of nucleic acid (DNA or RNA) wrapped in a thin coat of protein
coliphage - a bacteriophage that infects the bacterium Escherichia coli
typhoid bacteriophage - a bacteriophage specific for the bacterium Salmonella typhi


[bækˈtɪəriəfeɪdʒ] nbactériophage m
References in periodicals archive ?
Its pipeline and drug discovery platform are based on VLPs derived from RNA bacteriophage that have been engineered to display antigens in an ordered geometric pattern, which can be utilized to stimulate robust and specific immune responses to both foreign pathogens and self-antigens.