Etymology
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prion (n.)

petrel-like bird, 1848, from the Modern Latin name in zoology (1799), from Greek priōn "a saw," related to priein, prizein "to saw, to be cut in pieces," which is of uncertain etymology. So called for its saw-like bill.

updated on November 17, 2020

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Definitions of prion from WordNet

prion (n.)
(microbiology) an infectious protein particle similar to a virus but lacking nucleic acid; thought to be the agent responsible for scrapie and other degenerative diseases of the nervous system;
From wordnet.princeton.edu, not affiliated with etymonline.