Definition of polyvalent in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˌpälēˈvāl(ə)nt/


1 Chemistry Having a valence of three or more.
Example sentences
  • The main physical effect described by this relation is the sensitivity of lipid enrichment to valence, i.e., the increased concentration of polyvalent lipids compared to that of monovalent ones in the adsorption domain.
  • The slow exchange of the central capsule for polymers and polyvalent anions might be of interest for controlled release applications.
  • Covalently linking multiple copies of this peptide together on a flexible polyacrylamide backbone allowed them to construct from this a polyvalent inhibitor about 7500 times more potent than the original peptide.
2 Medicine Having the property of counteracting several related poisons or affording immunity against different strains of a microorganism.
Example sentences
  • Scientists in the United States have created a polyvalent inhibitor of the toxin that protects rats for at least one week after they receive huge doses of anthrax toxin.
  • Four sets of reagents (CP-I, CP-II, CP-III and CP - IV) comprising latex beads coated with polyvalent immune sera to 17 serotypes of heat resistant CPA were used in the study.
  • Patients with cirrhosis should be given a single dose of polyvalent pneumococcal vaccine as protection against infections such as peritonitis and pneumonia.
3Having many different functions, forms, or facets: as emotion, love is polyvalent
More example sentences
  • Freud introduced free association in The Interpretation of Dreams as a method to trigger expansive clusters of signification, often polyvalent and clashing in character, in order to unravel the import of a dream.
  • I want members of my church to keep struggling with the polyvalent symbols of cross and flag.
  • Most of the local cultures are in themselves multilayered and polyvalent.



Pronunciation: /ˌpälēˈvāləns/
Example sentences
  • We do not inhabit a fixed or even firm milieu, the poem suggests, while enacting polyvalence and parataxis.
  • By rejecting ‘the repressive hypothesis' Foucault encourages us to examine the incidence, resourcefulness, and polyvalence of power in fields previously regarded as free from its operation.
  • In the IF system, teamwork has the innovative and major objective of enhancing flexibility and reducing costs by increasing workers' polyvalence and the reduction in idle times.

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: pol·y·va·lent

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