Coloured transmission electron micrograph of virions (virus particles) of the rubella virus, which is the causative agent of German measles. Individual viruses consist of a lipoprotein coat and a core containing the genome RNA. They are about 60 nanometers in diameter. Rubella is of the togavirus group of viruses. German measles is spread in airborne droplets, and occurs 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 rubella vaccine is now routinely given to young babies, which provides a lasting immunity. Magnification: x45,000 at 6x4.5cm size.
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