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Questions tagged [virology]

Virology deals with the study of viruses, infectious entities that require the machinery of a host cell to replicate.

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Why have parasites not evolved to be harmless?

I have yet to understand why so many viruses or bacteria haven't evolved to be harmless (specifically, I don't know of any harmless virus). I think it would be greatly beneficial for a virus to ...
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HIV and open reading frames

In Wilk et al. 2001 I saw that HIV has 3 open reading frames. In the Watts et al. 2009, I noticed they mentioned HIV has 9 open reading frames. I don't understand this very well. e.g. ...
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Human Endogenous Retroviruses

I am reading this paper, which shows that a Human Endogenous Retrovirus (HERV) K provirus is present at the orthologous position of gorilla and chimpanzee genomes but absent in the human genome. If ...
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Is there any definition of life which makes viruses undeterminable?

There are many different definitions of life (RNA, something that comes through evolution) but not one I have seen which could not determine wheter viruses are living things (even though there are ...
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Does the new virus tree of life change their position between living and non-living things?

Viruses still do not fit the criteria of living or it's simplest form (the living cell), why would some say that the new virus tree of life makes it more closer to life? Aren't mitochondria in a point ...
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How heavy are all foreign microorganisms in and on the human body?

I define "foreign microorganism" as a microorganism which is not produced by the human body (not antibodies or leukocytes) including bacteria, viruses, fungi, biofilm aggregates or small lifeforms ...
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430 views

Viruses. Alive or Not? [duplicate]

I saw this fascinating article today about how HIV moves through a mouse host in real time. http://www.engadget.com/2015/10/02/watch-hiv-spread-through-mouse-in-real-time/#continued It's common to ...
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Virus-to-virus gene transfer via “sequences integrated into a common host organism”

From "Risks from GMOs due to Horizontal Gene Transfer", by Paul Keese: In addition to direct HGT between organisms as depicted in Figure 1, forms of indirect HGT have been observed, which involve ...
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In vitro virus assembly

Are researchers able to assemble viruses in vitro? For example, I imagine that a phage display library may be generated by throwing in a test tube the capsid proteins (or what have you) along with ...
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294 views

Meaning of “non-homologous virus”

From "Risks from GMOs due to Horizontal Gene Transfer", by Paul Keese: More recently, concerns have been raised that HGT from genetically modified organisms (GMOs) could have adverse effects (...
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108 views

Interpretation of faint band for Linear Array HPV Genotyping Test

After having used the test for research it would appear as if it is very specific. What is one to make of bands that are there but faint? Or what if there are two bands and one is big and bold and the ...
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What is the efficacy of an Ebola antibody response

There is contradictory (~?) evidence in the literature that antibody responses against Ebola are effective in clearing the virus and protecting the patient. Some time ago, I wrote a bit about the ...
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How to validate the use of an anti-virus monoclonal antibody in IHC by spiking a fresh organ with infected cultured cells?

I have assessed the specificity of a particular monoclonal antibody against a virus by immunofluorescence. I'd like to further validate it by testing it by IHC. Therefore I'd like to infect cells in ...
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Secretion in Gram negative bacteria

Among the 6 secretion systems in bacteria, can these 6 ways be sorted out in the order of how harmful it is to the human host? Like say type 3 is highly virulent so that comes first, but I don't know ...
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Could viruses be used as antibiotics?

Could we use viruses that only affect bacteria to act as antibiotics? The more bacteria, the more times the virus divides, so the stronger it gets. Is this practical?
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What is the difference between options protein and replication in the NCBI database?

After checking the NCBI help page, I am still unclear about the difference between protein and replication interactions for HIV. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/genome/viruses/retroviruses/hiv-1/...
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Recommendations for an intro level virology textbook? [closed]

I'm a college sophomore, and I was just accepted into a research lab that works with retroviruses. Since I haven't taken any classes on the topic yet, does anyone have recommendations for good, intro-...
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Viruses selected by evolution

First let me apologize in advance for I know almost nothing about biology. I had a conversation today with a family member who is a bio-computer-scientist and he talked to me about what his colleagues ...
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Why does flu vaccination only work against specific strains?

I was wondering why the flu vaccination doesn't protect us from all different types of flu. I know there are 3 major groups A, B and C and they mutate really fast. For example Influenza A virus has 2 ...
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Risks in bacterial phage therapy

I just finished reading J. Craig Venter's book Life at the Speed of Light: From the Double Helix to the Dawn of Digital Life. The book is a little over a year old now, and Venter has an optimistic ...
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How does a virus reach its host, it is always passive? [closed]

We know that viruses are non motile and cannot metabolise, and that it enters the host cells via binding to the receptors. But how exactly it reaches the host (that is, how it go from the ...
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1answer
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Lentivector biosafety

Lentivectors are widely used in molecular biology, most commonly to transduce in a stable way a desired gene. These vector system takes advantage from the ability of viruses to introduce their own ...
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What is the difference between influenza A and B viruses that causes their distinct seasonal patterns?

I recently learned from an answer at health.SE* that influenza B tends to occur later in the season compared to influenza A. According to the graph in that answer, during this year’s flu season the ...
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What is correct MVM vs. MMV?

I'm writing up a report and I see conflicts everywhere on the internet. Should it be Murine Minute Virus (MMV) or Minute Virus of Mice (MVM). The followup question is does it really matter.
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Why are people unable to develop lasting immunity against Norovirus?

Infection with many viruses will result in decades-long if not lifetime immunity, for example chicken pox. Because of the large number of viruses responsible for the common cold, lifelong immunity to ...
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1answer
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Retrovirus Production

I have been having difficulties with low transduction efficiencies of my retrovirus production. I expand my plasmid of interest (on MiG-GFP plasmid) in DH5α E Coli for ~24 hours, purify with Qiagen ...
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What percentage of cells in the human body are infected during a non-fatal viral infection?

I understand that this would be a very rough estimate, but approximately how many cells in the human body are infected during an average non-fatal viral infection before the infection is eliminated by ...
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1answer
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What is the chemical composition / empirical formula of Herpes Simplex 1?

Viruses such as polio are so well documented that a search for "empirical formula polio" gives you something like ...
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Is it known how the first viruses formed?

The oldest known virus is known to have infected prehistoric insects 300 million years ago. A virus is basically a parasitic strand if DNA or RNA encapsulated in a protein coat. It enters cells by "...
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Should gene therapy safety protocol include isolation?

In the case of a gene therapy trial where viral vectors are used to deliver genes into mammalian cells, including humans, should biosafety and ethical protocols include isolation of the patient as a ...
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1answer
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What are the positive effects of wrongful antibiotic use on a viral infection?

I categorically accept that bacteria differ from viruses; so antibiotics DON'T help in viral infections. I also read this and this; so no need to explain this. I've read about the negative effects (eg ...
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1answer
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Can virus resistance be acquired through generational exposure?

If I have a squash plant that has a mosaic virus of some kind, and I breed its descendants (via seed) for generations, each with exposure to the same virus, will future generations be likely to ...
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Are there any DNA sequences shared by all/most Viruses?

Is there any one DNA sequence shared by all or most viruses? I highly doubt there is mainly because of how different all of them are, but it's still worth a try. Thanks
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How does HIV mutate into other strains while keeping their virulent phenotype?

How does a virus like HIV mutate into so many strains, and yet all of them are harmful to our immune system? What gives this virus the ability to mutate so efficiently?
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Are some virus loads introduced to human cell but never triggered?

Is there a term or any evidence of phage DNA integrating into chromosomes/ DNA but never being triggered? For example, could a virus that affected Neanderthals still infect human cells today but is ...
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Why don't stem cell therapies use viruses?

Why don't stem cell therapies use a virus to deliver gene editing sequences to stem cells instead of the harvesting-transformation-transplant route. I thought it might be because of a lack of ...
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Are there any viruses that have infected all humans in the past or present? [closed]

Are there any known viruses that have managed to infect all of humankind either in the past or presently, either benign or otherwise?
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What virus transforms full grown plants?

I read an article by a gardener describing how a virus had transmitted a negative trait to his plants. It rather shocked me, because I hadn't realized that a virus could transform an adult plant. I ...
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What does the gene name “lexA” stand for?

It is an important gene expressed in E. coli that represses the SOS response and also the expression of lambda lytic phase genes. UV light and damage to DNA is responsible for its breakdown and hence ...
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Balanced vs Maximized Codon Optimization

I have worked with the optimization of several viral proteins, from different viruses/families, with different results. When Menzella, 2011 was published I tried that method. I found quite the ...
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Can an influenza virus carry other infectors with it?

This idea came to my mind when thinking about how many people become ill in many locations with similar symptoms (fever and rough cough) from Influenza. There are of course different types of ...
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Hydrophobia Outside of Rabies?

RELATED: Why does rabies cause hydrophobia? Agony, Hydrophobia and viruses in the light of evolutionary principles Has hydrophobia been found outside of rabies? I have only seen it being ...
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1answer
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Which virus capsids consist of only one type of capsid protein?

The Tobacco Mosaic Virus (TMV) capsid consists of many copies of one protein (http://www.rcsb.org/pdb/101/motm.do?momID=109). Which other viral capsids consist of only one kind of coat protein? Does ...
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1answer
258 views

At which temperature is the Tick-Borne Encephalitis Virus destroyed?

At which temperature is the Tick-Borne Encephalitis Virus destroyed? If there is no data specifically for TBEV, is there any data for typical temperatures at which other Flaviviruses / Flaviviridae / ...
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Is there a period after you have had a cold when you cannot get a cold again?

I always assumed colds ran on a 'no tagbacks' principle: once it's out of your system, it takes a while before you can get a cold again. Is there any truth to this, or can rhinoviruses hit you at any ...
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How exactly can dsRNA be introduced to a cell?

Is it just by viruses or are there other means by which it gets into cells, such as plasmid uptake?