Viral vector nomenclature

Kyle Legate via (by legatek from
Wed Jun 6 15:26:22 EST 2007

DK wrote:
> In article <f453gi$ini$1 from>, iayork from (Ian A. York) wrote:
>> In article <5cm33eF318dlkU2 from>,
>> Kyle Legate  <legatek from> wrote:
>>> Tom Anderson wrote:
>>>> What do you call those blobs?
>>> Attenuated viri.
>> You might conveivably call them attenuuated, but you wouldn't call them 
>> "viri" under any circumstances, since only illiterates (and, increasingly, 
>> computer techs -- but I repeat myself) use "viri" as the plural for 
>> "viruses".  "Virus" in Latin is a mass noun, and as such has no plural in 
>> Latin; as an English word it follows the usual English rule and uses the 
>> plural "viruses".  People who, either attempting to show off their 
>> non-existent Latin, or attempting to blindly follow a rule they don't 
>> understand, use "viri" as the plural are, if anything, using the plural or 
>> "vir" ("man"). 
>> I have nothing but pity for the poor pathetic wretches who use "virii", 
>> thus desperately attempting to use an incorrect rule to pluralize the 
>> non-existent word "virius".
> Heh-heh. I aways wondered if people who use "virii" also use "busi"
> for more than one bus :-)
No, but they use rhinoceri for more than one rhinoceros.

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