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Viral infectivity

Discussion in 'Step I' started by TerpMD, Jun 13, 2008.

  1. TerpMD

    TerpMD 2+ Year Member

    Sep 26, 2007
    UMD 2010
    In FA it says that purified nucleic acids of most dsDNA viruses (- pox, HBV) are infectious. I thought infective meant that the virus could go in and immediately start to make protein, hence why +sense RNA were infectious. Am I missing something here? Can someone please explain? Thanks in advance!
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  3. osli

    osli Senior Member 5+ Year Member

    Oct 13, 2005
    I think it is because those viruses can utilize the machinery of the host cell to translate and replicate, and don't need to carry their own enzymes along, right? Pox replicates in the cytoplasm and uses a lot of its own machinery (thus "naked" DNA is not infectious), and HBV... well I don't remember why. :laugh: Oh... it carries it's own reverse transcriptase... not sure why, I guess I better go review how it translates and replicates. :oops:

    So +ssRNA and dsDNA sequences + host cell = all you need to produce proteins and progeny. For the others, you need a virus specific enzyme(s) that's carried in the capsid.

    OK, someone check me on that to make sure I'm not bonkers.

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