Hepatitis B virus (HBV) is the cause of serum hepatitis or hepatitis B, coloured transmission electron micrograph (TEM). Human hepatitis B virus is the prototype virus of the Hepadnavirus family and is a DNA virus (partly double stranded). The complete virus or virion is called a Dane particle (approx. The virus attacks the liver, producing liver inflammation, flu-like symptoms, followed by jaundice. The inflammation is the immune response to the virus invading liver cells and replicating. The virus has a coat (capsid) bearing surface glycoproteins, which the body detects as foreign substances (antigenic determinants). It is spread by infected blood through blood transfusions, tattooing, acupuncture, and needle sharing by intravenous drug abusers. Hepatitis B is also a sexually transmitted disease. Magnification: x52,880 when shortest axis printed at 25 millimetres.
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