Definition: A genus of viruses in the family Herpesviridae infecting humans and other animals, many of these viruses having special affinity for salivary glands, and causing enlargement of cells of various organs and development of characteristic inclusions (owl eye) in the cytoplasm or nucleus. Infection of embryo in utero may result in malformation and fetal death. They are all species specific and include salivary virus, inclusion body rhinitis virus of pigs, and others.
Synonym(s): visceral disease virus
[cyto- + G. megas, big]
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