Viruses

In biological terms, virus represents a microscopic entity. Viruses cannot be classified as a form of living organisms for a variety of reasons. Apart from their ability to replicate in thousands, they do not have the other qualities that qualify for living organisms. They are mere parasites. Viruses always need a host for them to multiply in. without a host, viruses are nothing. To synthesize proteins, viruses depend on the host cell. Viruses do not have the capacity to produce food and transform that into energy by themselves.

Typically, a virus may range in size from fifteen to six hundred nanometers. The actual structure of a virus comprises of a nucleic acid component such as RNA or DNA. This is wrapped within a strong protein coat. The bacteriophage has a long tail sheath. Virions represent the infective format of viruses.

Plant viruses are carried by pollinating insects and other organisms. They attack the plant cells and replicate their own DNA or RNA, multiply in large numbers and take control of the plant system. There are various categories of viruses, based on the existence or absence of lipid envelope, the size of their DNA or RNA and the capsid structure. From the 19th century onwards, major advancements were made in the study of viruses and their harmful effect on other organisms.

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