West Nile Virus

What is West Nile Virus?

Late summer brings excitement about college football and hopes that the weather will soon cool off, but it also brings a risk for West Nile Virus, a common infection, but one that is not frequently diagnosed.

Sep 09, 2014
popularity not rated yet | comments 0

West Nile virus (WNV) is a virus of the family Flaviviridae. Part of the Japanese encephalitis (JE) antigenic complex of viruses, it is found in both tropical and temperate regions. It mainly infects birds, but is known to infect humans, horses, dogs, cats, bats, chipmunks, skunks, squirrels, domestic rabbits, crows, robins, crocodiles and alligators. The main route of human infection is through the bite of an infected mosquito. Approximately 90% of West Nile Virus infections in humans are without any symptoms.

Image reconstructions and cryoelectron microscopy reveal a 45–50 nm virion covered with a relatively smooth protein surface. This structure is similar to the dengue fever virus; both belong to the genus Flavivirus within the family Flaviviridae. The genetic material of WNV is a positive-sense, single strand of RNA, which is between 11,000 and 12,000 nucleotides long; these genes encode seven non-structural proteins and three structural proteins. The RNA strand is held within a nucleocapsid formed from 12 kDa protein blocks; the capsid is contained within a host-derived membrane altered by two viral glycoproteins.

This text uses material from Wikipedia licensed under CC BY-SA

Latest Spotlight News

Mystery of the reverse-wired eyeball solved

From a practical standpoint, the wiring of the human eye - a product of our evolutionary baggage - doesn't make a lot of sense. In vertebrates, photoreceptors are located behind the neurons in the back of the eye - resulting ...

Neurons controlling appetite made from skin cells

Researchers have for the first time successfully converted adult human skin cells into neurons of the type that regulate appetite, providing a patient-specific model for studying the neurophysiology of weight ...

A gene for brain size only found in humans

About 99 percent of human genes are shared with chimpanzees. Only the small remainder sets us apart. However, we have one important difference: The brain of humans is three times as big as the chimpanzee ...

Does traffic noise increase the risk of obesity?

There is an association between road traffic noise and the risk of obesity among people who are particularly sensitive to noise, according to a study from the Norwegian Institute of Public Health.

Pancreatic cancer has four distinct types

Researchers have found that pancreatic cancer can be split into four unique types, a discovery that could be used to improve treatments for the disease, according to a study published in Nature.