Coloured scanning electron micrograph of rubella viruses (dots) erupting from the surface of an infected cell. Rubella is the causative agent of German measles. Once a cell is infected, it is programmed to reproduce more viruses which then leave through the cell membrane. The disease of German measles is spread in airborne droplets, occurring most commonly in children as a mild rash. Rubella is a risk to unborn babies if the mother contracts the virus during the first four months of pregnancy. A vaccine for rubella is now routinely given to young babies over a year old, which provides a long lasting immunity. Magnification: x9600 at x4.5cm size.
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