< New Latin (variolae) vaccīnae cowpox (in title of E. Jenner's treatise of 1798), equivalent to vacc(a) cow + -īnae, feminine plural of -īnus -ine1 (Source:

Late 18th century from Latin vaccinus, from vacca ‘cow’ (because of the early use of the cowpox virus against smallpox). (Source:

Definitions of Vaccine



  1. any preparation used as a preventive inoculation to confer immunity against a specific disease, usually employing an innocuous form of the disease agent, as killed or weakened bacteria or viruses, to stimulate antibody production.
  2. the virus of cowpox, used in vaccination, obtained from pox vesicles of a cow or person.
  3. a software program that helps to protect against computer viruses, as by detecting them and warning the user.
  4. a suspension of dead, attenuated, or otherwise modified microorganisms (viruses, bacteria, or rickettsiae) for inoculation to produce immunity to a disease by stimulating the production of antibodies
  5. (originally) a preparation of the virus of cowpox taken from infected cows and inoculated in humans to produce immunity to smallpox
  6. (modifier) of or relating to vaccination or vaccinia
  7. computing a piece of software designed to detect and remove computer viruses from a system



  1. of or relating to vaccination.
  2. of or relating to vaccinia.
  3. of, relating to, or derived from cows.



  1. A preparation of a weakened or killed pathogen, such as a bacterium or virus, or of a portion of the pathogen's structure that upon administration stimulates antibody production against the pathogen but is incapable of causing severe infection.
  2. A vaccine prepared from the cowpox virus and inoculated against smallpox.



  1. A substance used to stimulate the production of antibodies and provide immunity against one or several diseases, prepared from the causative agent of a disease, its products, or a synthetic substitute, treated to act as an antigen without inducing the disease.



  1. : a preparation of killed microorganisms, living attenuated organisms, or living fully virulent organisms that is administered to produce or artificially increase immunity to a particular disease

Example sentences for Vaccine

  1. The vaccine is delivered through a “carrier virus” that causes a common cold in chimpanzees but does not affect humans.
  2. The need for an Ebola vaccine in West Africa has never been greater.
  3. With Ebola still raging in West Africa, the race to find a vaccine is heating up.
  4. On average, the vaccine has an efficacy of about 60 percent.
  5. With enough changing of the influenza RNA over time, the vaccine no longer provokes the “right” immune response.
  6. That excuse scarcely exists now, for there are few physicians who cannot obtain a better form of vaccine within a very short time.
  7. We use the cow to get vaccine for small-pox, the horse to supply the anti-toxin for diphtheria.
  8. The method of preparing the vaccine is similar to that recommended by Lignires.
  9. But he really ought to know the difference between a vaccine and an anti-toxin.
  10. As to its use, as stated by London, in lieu of the vaccine matter, it is altogether erroneous.

Related words & Synonyms

needle, dose, pharmaceutical, medication, antibiotic, drug, remedy, cure, prescription, pill, antibody, dram, inoculation, booster, enema, anesthetic, tincture, antidote, balm, salve

Nearby words

vaccina , vaccinal , vaccinate , vaccination , vaccinator , vaccine lymph , vaccine point , vaccinee , vaccinia , vaccinia virus

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