Respiratory syncytial virus. Coloured transmission electron micrograph of respiratory syncytial viruses (RSV's). The RSV is a paramyxovirus, a major cause of human respiratory tract infections in temperate climates, especially in winter. Each virus (yellow) consists of an RNA (ribonucleic acid) core enclosed in a protein coat within a phospholipid envelope. In adults the virus affects only the upper respiratory tract, but in infants the infection is more severe and may cause bronchiolitis (inflammation of the bronchioles) or bronchopneumonia, which can be fatal. Magnification: x200,000 at 35mm size.
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