LOUISE HUGHES / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY LOUISE HUGHES / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Adeno-associated viruses, computer illustration. Adeno-associated viruses (AAVs) are the smallest known viruses to infect humans. They do not cause diseases, and only provoke a mild immune response. Because they incorporate their genetic material into a specific location within the host's genome, they have potential as a vector for gene therapy. The spiky protein coat (capsid) protects the genetic material.
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