CNRI / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY CNRI / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
False-colour transmission electron micrograph (TEM) of a single virion (virus particle) of the poxvirus family of viruses. The family includes the variola & vaccinia viruses which cause smallpox & cowpox respectively in humans. The poxviridae are the largest & most complex of all vertebrate viruses (230-300 nanometers in size). The brick-shaped virion has a central DNA containing body surrounded by a series of membranes (red). Replication of the DNA & the beginnings of the formation of the viral progeny occurs in the cytoplasm of the cell; most other viruses replicate within the cell nucleus. Magnification: X 50,000 at 35mm size.
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