J.C. REVY, ISM / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY J.C. REVY, ISM / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Baculovirus. False-colour transmission electron micrograph (TEM) of a section through an insect cell infected with baculoviruses. A large nucleus of the cell is seen (at centre) containing three polyhedrons (red). Inside these polyhedrons are young rod-shaped baculoviruses. Polyhedrons are released into the environment & protect the virus during unfavourable conditions; when a caterpillar host eats them, viruses will hatch and infect the insect. The baculovirus is harmless to humans, and easily manipulated for genetic engineering. Apart from it producing the anti-viral drug interferon- B, this virus is being considered in the development of an AIDS vaccine.
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