What is virulence?

  • (noun): Extreme harmfulness (as the capacity of a microorganism to cause disease).
    Example: "The virulence of the plague"
    Synonyms: virulency
    See also — Additional definitions below


Virulence is by MeSH definition the degree of pathogenicity within a group or species of parasites as indicated by case fatality rates and/or the ability of the organism to invade the tissues of the host. The pathogenicity of an organism - its ability to cause disease - is determined by its virulence factors. The noun virulence derives from the adjective virulent. Virulent can describe either disease severity or a pathogen's infectivity. The word virulent derives from the Latin word virulentus, meaning "a poisoned wound" or "full of poison."

Read more about Virulence.

Some articles on virulence:

Virulence - Evolution - Coincidental Evolution Hypothesis
... Some forms of pathogenic virulence did not co-evolve with the host ... More generally, the virulence of many pathogens in humans may not be a target of selection itself, but rather an accidental by-product of selection that ...
Molecular Koch's Postulates
... satisfy molecular Koch's postulates are often referred to as virulence factors ... Specific inactivation of the gene(s) associated with the suspected virulence trait should lead to a measurable loss in pathogenicity or virulence." Virulence of ... of the gene into the microbe should restore virulence in the animal model ...
Bacterial Adhesin - Adhesins As Virulence Factors
... pathogens exploit specific adhesion to host cells as their main virulence factor ... during infection play the most important role in adhesion based virulence ...
Sigma 38 - The RpoS Regulon - Virulence
... Therefore, infection can be a stressful event for pathogenic bacteria and control of virulence genes may be temporally correlated with the timing of ... Discovery of RpoS-dependent virulence genes in Salmonella are consistent with RpoS as a general regulator of the stress response the spv gene found on a virulence plasmid in this ...

More definitions of "virulence":

  • (noun): Extreme hostility.
    Example: "The virulence of the malicious old man"
    Synonyms: virulency