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Ch 7: Intro to Viruses

About This Chapter

These interactive video lessons provide an introduction to viruses, including their shape, structure, and methods of reproduction. Use the video timeline to quickly jump to topics of interest and the practice quizzes to test what you've learned after completing the lesson.

Intro to Viruses - Chapter Summary and Learning Objectives

The lessons in this chapter cover the basics on viruses, from the life cycle of a virus to the variety of viral classes. If you have any questions about viruses, our expert instructors are available to answer your questions. The chapter topics are designed to teach you about:

  • How DNA and RNA viruses replicate
  • Virus shapes
  • How viruses replicate their genomes
  • Basic components of a virus
  • The flu and HIV viruses

Video Objective
What Are Viruses? - Definition, Structure & Function Discuss the discovery of viruses and their basic composition.
Shapes of a Virus: Helical, Icosahedral, Prolate, Complex & Enveloped Learn about virus shapes and how these shapes help with identification.
The Life Cycle of a Virus: How Viruses Live, Attack & Replicate Explore how a virus attaches to and lives within a host.
Classification of Viruses: Viral Genome and Replication Scheme Go over the classification schema for viruses and explore the defining characteristics of each class.
Replication of DNA Viruses Learn about the process in which DNA viruses replicate within their host.
Replication of RNA Viruses Examine how RNA viruses reproduce within a cell.
How Viruses Mutate: Antigenic Drift and Antigenic Shift Track virus mutation and the ways viruses evade the immune system.
Viruses: Bacteriophage Lytic and Lysogenic Cycles Discuss the two different cycles of virus reproduction.
Flu Viruses, HIV and Immune System Evasion Look into these well-known virus types.

7 Lessons in Chapter 7: Intro to Viruses
What Are Viruses? - Definition, Structure & Function

1. What Are Viruses? - Definition, Structure & Function

In this lesson, you'll learn some historical facts about viruses and the material they are composed of. Find out more as we review the capsid, nucleic acids, the viral envelope, viruses, virions, bacteriophages and virology.

Shapes of a Virus: Helical, Icosahedral, Prolate, Complex & Enveloped

2. Shapes of a Virus: Helical, Icosahedral, Prolate, Complex & Enveloped

Learn about the different shapes viruses can have, such as helical, icosahedral, prolate, complex and enveloped. Find out why one shape is particularly useful from an energetic standpoint.

The Life Cycle of a Virus: How Viruses Live, Attack & Replicate

3. The Life Cycle of a Virus: How Viruses Live, Attack & Replicate

Find out how viruses infect and replicate as we explore the important steps of the virus life cycle, including attachment, uncoating, penetration, replication, and release, as well as the lysogenic and lytic cycles.

Classification of Viruses: Viral Genome and Replication Scheme

4. Classification of Viruses: Viral Genome and Replication Scheme

Find out how viruses are classified based on their being double-stranded, single-stranded, positive-sense, negative-sense, or by having something called reverse transcriptase.

Replication of DNA Viruses

5. Replication of DNA Viruses

This lesson will give you a basic overview of how DNA viruses replicate inside of a host cell. We will cover the entry, integration, replication and release of DNA viruses.

Replication of RNA Viruses

6. Replication of RNA Viruses

This lesson will give you a basic overview of how different types of RNA viruses replicate inside of an animal cell. We will cover the essence of being double-stranded and retroviruses, as well as positive-and negative-sense RNA viruses.

How Viruses Mutate: Antigenic Drift and Antigenic Shift

7. How Viruses Mutate: Antigenic Drift and Antigenic Shift

This lesson will discuss the major ways by which viruses, notably the flu virus, mutates. We will talk about recombination, reassortment, antigenic drift, antigenic shift, and more!

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