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Meaning of filterable virus

fil'terable vi'rus

Pronunciation: [key]
  1. a virus particle small enough to pass through a filter of diatomaceous earth or porcelain, which will not pass bacteria: chiefly historical or an informal indicator of size, as synthetic membrane filters now permit passage of the smallest virus.
Random House Unabridged Dictionary, Copyright © 1997, by Random House, Inc., on Infoplease.