viruses

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ilham
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viruses

Post by ilham » Sun Oct 21, 2007 4:19 am

what two chemical substances are found in all viruses?

weesper
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Post by weesper » Sun Oct 21, 2007 9:37 am

lame homework question, but I guess answer should be DNA and proteins....

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Post by lara » Sun Oct 21, 2007 1:37 pm

can b rna too .more apt answer is nucleic acid and proteins

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Post by biohazard » Sun Oct 21, 2007 5:20 pm

Uhuh... define what you mean with chemical substances? Viruses can contain a lot of different stuff, including macromolecules such as DNA or RNA, as well as proteins in their capsule or as enzymes inside the capsule. Furthermore, several viruses have lipid envelopes, which they have acquired when budding out from the cell - so it is somewhat a matter of definition whether the viral particle itself actually contains lipids. (The lipid coat can often be removed, leaving an intact viral capsule containing nucleic acids and enzymes). Finally, viruses can contain carbohydrates or glycoproteins, such as the hemagglutin of the influenza virus - these structures often work as receptors.

However, stuff mentioned above aren't usually considered as chemical components, but rather macromolecules - even though they naturally have a chemical element like all life does.

Then again, if we go to pure chemistry, viruses can contain many similar chemical compounds that cells have - I'm not going be that detailed here, though :)

EDIT: okay, after reading the question twice, you asked what of the abovementioned is found in ALL viruses. Well, like said before that'd probably be proteins and nucleic acids. Sorry for the long rat for nothing, hopefully it contained some useful information nonetheless ;)

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Post by MrMistery » Mon Oct 22, 2007 5:59 am

I have always viewd the lipid bilayer as an integral part of the virion(where it is present). At least in some viruses this appears to be as necerssaru as anything else. for example, the HIV virus needs the GP41 and GP120 carbs in the lipid membrane in order to enter the cell. Similar with influenza and the hemaaglutinin.
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Post by biohazard » Mon Oct 22, 2007 10:50 am

Agreed.

I sort of meant that the lipid membrane is "borrowed" from the cell when the virus exits, even though it often is crucial for the proper functioning of the virus. Then again, one could probably say that everything in a virus is borrowed (or stolen) from the host cell anyway...

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Post by MrMistery » Mon Oct 22, 2007 8:30 pm

that was what i was gonna say. everything is borrowed. it's just that the lipid bilayer is acquired last
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Post by Poison » Fri Oct 26, 2007 1:23 pm

The one who asks this question is seeking for the answer: Nucleic acid and protein. Just think simple Andrew, the one who asks the question does not know as much bio as you do. :D
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Post by MrMistery » Fri Oct 26, 2007 5:38 pm

I am not here to give simple answers to people asking their homework questions, I am here to discuss biology and help people understand and increase their knowledge. If I had wanted to do homework, I would have joined an online tutoring site ;)
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Post by Poison » Sun Oct 28, 2007 10:37 pm

People have different levels of knowledge. I was just trying to say that this is important while answering a question. ;)
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Post by MrMistery » Mon Oct 29, 2007 7:39 am

that's good, cause i wasn't answering the question. In fact, my posts on this thread have nothing to do with the initial question. i was merely discussing an aspect with biohazard
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