retrovirus(redirected from retroviruses)
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schematic of a retrovirus
n. pl. ret·ro·vi·rus·es
Any of a family of viruses, many of which produce tumors, that contain RNA and reverse transcriptase, including HIV.
(Microbiology) any of several viruses whose genetic specification is encoded in RNA rather than DNA and that are able to reverse the normal flow of genetic information from DNA to RNA by transcribing RNA into DNA: many retroviruses are known to cause cancer in animals
ret•ro•vi•rus(ˌrɛ trəˈvaɪ rəs, ˈrɛ trəˌvaɪ-)
n., pl. -rus•es.
any of various single-stranded RNA-containing viruses, of the family Retroviridae, that have a helical envelope and contain the enzyme reverse transcriptase, which enables genetic information from viral RNA to become part of host DNA.
Any of a group of viruses containing RNA in which the RNA can convert to DNA inside a cell. Some retroviruses cause cancer in humans. The virus that causes AIDS is a retrovirus.
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|Noun||1.||retrovirus - any of a group of viruses that contain two single-strand linear RNA molecules per virion and reverse transcriptase (RNA to DNA); the virus transcribes its RNA into a cDNA provirus that is then incorporated into the host cell|
animal virus - an animal pathogen that is a virus