Respiratory syncytial virus. Coloured transmission electron micrograph (TEM) of a section through a respiratory syncytial virus (RSV). This paramyxovirus, or pneumovirus, is a major cause of human respiratory tract infections in temperate climates, especially in winter. The virus consists of RNA (ribonucleic acid) genetic material enclosed in a protein coat, or capsid, within a phospholipid envelope (blue). The envelope is covered in protein spikes (green). In adults the virus only affects the upper respiratory tract, but in infants bronchiolitis (bronchiole inflammation) or bronchopneumonia can result. Magnification unknown.
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