Turnip yellow mosaic virus capsid

Turnip yellow mosaic virus capsid

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Credit: LAGUNA DESIGN/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Turnip yellow mosaic virus capsid, molecular model. This virus infects a wide variety of plants, including crops such as turnips and cabbages, causing yellow patches on the leaves. In viruses, the capsid is the protein shell that encloses the genetic material. A capsid consists of subunits called capsomeres that self-assemble to form the shell seen here. Here, this shell, approximately spherical in shape, has icosahedral symmetry. One of the functions of the capsid is to aid the transmission of the viral genetic material into host cells. The cell mechanisms are then used to produce new virus particles.

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