STEVE GSCHMEISSNER / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY STEVE GSCHMEISSNER / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Cell lysis. Coloured scanning electron micrograph (SEM) of a herpes simplex infected 293T cell undergoing cell lysis. Cell lysis is a common outcome of viral infection. It consists of a disruption of cellular membranes (pink), leading to cell death and the release of cytoplasmic material (purple) including mitochondria ( dark purple round structures) into the extracellular space. Lysis is actively induced by many viruses, because cells seldom trigger lysis on their own. Most non-enveloped virus, and few enveloped viruses require cell lysis in order to release new virions from the infected cell. Cell lysis is actively induced by viruses using various mechanisms. Magnification: x5000 when printed 10 centimetres wide. Specimen courtesy of Greg Towers, UCL.
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