Understanding the Genetics of a Virus
A virus is a tiny submicroscopic viral agent that replicates within an organism’s living cells. A virus can affect any living cell, including plants and animals to human beings, including archaustrophus bacteria and E coli. A virus can cause various pathological conditions in different organisms. Some viruses, such as retroviruses cause cancer, while other viruses cause diseases associated with the body’s immune system.
The function of a virus is to invigorate or spread a living thing by inserting its genetic code into its host cell without damaging the host cell itself. The virus then divides into duplicates, one duplicate joining itself to a newly formed envelope that eventually latches on to the host cell and starts to replicate. Viruses make use of a protein coat called the capsid to attach themselves to their receptors and use ribosomes to multiply themselves.
Every living organism has nucleic acids that code for protein, DNA and RNA, the building blocks of life. Nucleic acids, in their bases and polymers, are the building blocks of life as we know it. These nucleic acids can be expressed in the form of viruses when an organism is attacked or exposed to an infection that causes viral infection. Since most living organisms have ribosomes, they are good candidates for being infected by viruses that involve the enveloped viral capsid. In fact, nearly every virus causes some sort of infection, which accounts for the diversity of viruses.
A virus’ protein coat is a highly complex region of its envelope that includes repeated sequences of amino acids (proteins) and non-repetient (nucleic acid) sections. Every virus has multiple envelope membranes, which are made up of protein molecules of varying lengths and folded shapes. The sequence of amino acids determines the shape and size of the viral envelope, which allows the virus to latch on to the host cell (compartments of the host cell that are electrically charged). The virus then releases genetic material that combines with other viral particles to replicate itself.
Each envelope strand contains genetic material (either RNA or DNA), which is replicated using an enzyme. Enzymes can either replicate the genetic material directly, or they can integrate a copied DNA into an already existing viral envelope strand. Alternatively, the viral enzymes may integrate new viral code into a template of the target strain. This enables the virus to change and adapt to the target strain’ characteristics, resulting in the generation of a strain of virus that is more fit to its environment. When this happens, the virus becomes a virus and is thus considered a strain.
Strains of a virus are categorized as either positive or negative, and are designated as A/S or P. It is only when the envelope of the virus has reached the target cell that the two strands are separated and it is this separation that allows scientists to differentiate between strains. Positively identified viruses are always known by their appearance, for example as a greenish color or the development of a bump. Conversely, negatives cannot be identified by their look but are also not characterized by their colouration. In addition, viruses with a positive identity are usually known to have developed from cellular machinery already present in the host cell, whereas the PVs are unique when they develop from a viral source that has not yet been integrated into the host’s cellular machinery. There is currently no way to guarantee the identity of a virus; however, the name of the strain remains the same.