Special Reviews

How Viruses Enter Animal Cells

Science  09 Apr 2004:
Vol. 304, Issue 5668, pp. 237-242
DOI: 10.1126/science.1094823

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Abstract

Viruses replicate within living cells and use the cellular machinery for the synthesis of their genome and other components. To gain access, they have evolved a variety of elegant mechanisms to deliver their genes and accessory proteins into the host cell. Many animal viruses take advantage of endocytic pathways and rely on the cell to guide them through a complex entry and uncoating program. In the dialogue between the cell and the intruder, the cell provides critical cues that allow the virus to undergo molecular transformations that lead to successful internalization, intra-cellular transport, and uncoating.

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