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HIV viruses. Coloured Transmission Electron Micrograph (TEM) inside a cell infected with Human Immunodeficiency Viruses (HIV), cause of AIDS. Several green and orange cross-sectioned viruses are seen. These have spiked outer protein coats (orange and red) surrounding a core of RNA genetic material (green). HIV attacks T-lymphocyte white blood cells of the immune system. A special protein in it's coat attaches the virus to the T- lymphocyte cell. The virus RNA then takes over the cell, turning it into an HIV-making machine. The infected person's immune system is therefore weakened and death is caused by normally non-fatal diseases. Magnification: x80,000 at 6x7cm size.
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