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Polydnaviruses as Symbionts and Gene Delivery Systems

Polydnaviruses as Symbionts and Gene Delivery Systems | Virology News | Scoop.it

"Textbooks define viruses as infectious agents with nucleic acid genomes (RNA or DNA), which replicate inside living host cells to produce particles (virions) that can transfer the genome to other cells [1], [2]. The Polydnaviridae was recognized as a family of viruses in 1995, and is currently divided into two genera named the Bracovirus and Ichnovirus [3]. Polydnavirus (PDV) virions consist of enveloped nucleocapsids and package multiple circular, double-stranded (ds) DNAs with aggregate sizes that range from 190 to more than 500 kbp [4]. PDVs are also strictly associated with insects called parasitoid wasps (Hymenoptera), which are free living nectar feeders as adults but which develop during their immature stages by feeding inside the body of another insect (the host) [3], [4]. Recent studies, however, indicate that PDVs differ from all other known viruses in ways that challenge traditional views of what viruses are and how they function."

 

Great review on a group of viruses that has fascinated me since I first heard of them - mainly because there seemed to be no end to the discovery of new bits of genome, and no-one could ever seem to clone a whole one.  

 

I especially like this quote:

"The novelty is that BVs today are obligate beneficial symbionts, which persist entirely from a proviral genome yet produce virions that efficiently deliver genes to other organisms wasps depend upon for survival. Are PDVs still viruses? If we can accept that viruses are not always obligate intracellular parasites, we would suggest the answer is yes."

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Virology News
Topical news snippets about viruses that affect people.  And other things. Like Led Zeppelin. And zombies B-)
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Brazil Vaccine Scandal Imperils Bolsonaro as Protests Spread 

Brazil Vaccine Scandal Imperils Bolsonaro as Protests Spread  | Virology News | Scoop.it
Brazilians were angry over how slowly their government moved to acquire coronavirus vaccines. Now they’re incensed over a corruption scandal involving vaccine deals.
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Geminiviruses encode additional small proteins with specific subcellular localizations and virulence function

Geminiviruses encode additional small proteins with specific subcellular localizations and virulence function | Virology News | Scoop.it
Geminiviruses are small plant-infecting viruses. Here the authors screen the geminivirus genome for small open reading frames that may have been previously overlooked and show that one encodes a protein named V3 that localizes to the Golgi and acts as an RNA silencing suppressor.
Ed Rybicki's insight:
Like finding a pocket you didn't know you had in your old jeans
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'Inflammatory aging clock' predicts risk of illness and frailty

'Inflammatory aging clock' predicts risk of illness and frailty | Virology News | Scoop.it
A new method beats the number of birthday candles on your cake in predicting your risk for the illness, frailty, and decline that come with aging.
Ed Rybicki's insight:
I have a keen if morbid interest in this sort of thing...
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What's the latest on a COVID-19 vaccine for kids?

What's the latest on a COVID-19 vaccine for kids? | Virology News | Scoop.it
With no COVID vaccine available for kids younger than 12, an expert explains how trials work and when we can expect kids to be able to get the shot.
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Greek police blast anti-vaccine protesters with water cannon and tear gas outside parliament in Athens

Greek police blast anti-vaccine protesters with water cannon and tear gas outside parliament in Athens | Virology News | Scoop.it
Police in Athens have broken up a protest outside the Greek parliament, using tear gas and water cannon to scatter the demonstrators. The protest was a response to the government’s announcement of compulsory vaccination for some.
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Excellent!
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Vaccine rollout for journalists to start soon, Sanef calls for calm [South Africa]

Vaccine rollout for journalists to start soon, Sanef calls for calm [South Africa] | Virology News | Scoop.it
The South African National Editors’ Forum says registrations for journalists for the Covid-19 vaccine are almost complete.
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Prior infection with influenza virus but not vaccination leaves a long-term immunological imprint that intensifies the protective efficacy of antigenically drifted vaccine strains 

Prior infection with influenza virus but not vaccination leaves a long-term immunological imprint that intensifies the protective efficacy of antigenically drifted vaccine strains  | Virology News | Scoop.it
The role of pre-existing immunity for influenza vaccine responses is of great importance for public health, and thus has been studied in various conte…...
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Australian production of AstraZeneca vaccine in early July just one-tenth of what government promised 

Australian production of AstraZeneca vaccine in early July just one-tenth of what government promised  | Virology News | Scoop.it
Production at CSL facilities in Melbourne vastly reduced after falling from 1m doses a week in May to as low as 232,800 in June...
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Vaccine inequity: Inside the cutthroat race to secure doses

Vaccine inequity: Inside the cutthroat race to secure doses | Virology News | Scoop.it
PARIS (AP) — No one disputes that the world is unfair. But no one expected a vaccine gap between the global rich and poor that was this bad, this far into the pandemic. Inequity is everywhere: Inoculations go begging in the United States while Haiti, a short plane ride away, received its first...
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Research Updates for Influenza Virus and Vaccine Development

Research Updates for Influenza Virus and Vaccine Development | Virology News | Scoop.it
While the scientific community has been focusing on combating novel severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) that is responsible for the current COVID-19 pandemic, we also want to draw your attention to this Special Issue of Vaccines entitled “Influenza Virus and Vaccine Development”...
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Trends in Respiratory Virus Infections During the COVID-19 Pandemic in Singapore, 2020 | Global Health | JAMA Network Open | JAMA Network

Trends in Respiratory Virus Infections During the COVID-19 Pandemic in Singapore, 2020 | Global Health | JAMA Network Open | JAMA Network | Virology News | Scoop.it
This cross-sectional study assessed the changes in respiratory virus prevalence in 2020 vs 2019 associated with the COVID-19 pandemic.
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Is Novavax the Leader in Developing a Combo COVID/Flu Vaccine?

Is Novavax the Leader in Developing a Combo COVID/Flu Vaccine? | Virology News | Scoop.it
For now, at least, the answer appears to be "yes."...
Ed Rybicki's comment, July 1, 9:33 AM
Nah - I'd bet on Medicago Inc!
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Hot nights mess up rice's internal clock

Hot nights mess up rice's internal clock | Virology News | Scoop.it
Hot night skew the "internal clocks" of rice, resulting in smaller crops, research indicates. As temperatures rise, this threatens food security.
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Oregon requiring ranchers to vaccinate mink against COVID | The Spokesman-Review

SALEM, Ore. – The Oregon Department of Agriculture has filed a temporary emergency rule requiring all mink ranchers to vaccinate their animals against COVID-19. State Veterinarian Dr. Ryan Scholz said officials are looking to stop the virus from mutating in mink and being passed back to humans, Oregon Public Broadcasting reported. “ODA is taking the necessary precautions to reduce the risk of infection in captive mink, as well as reduce the risk of potential mutation of the virus and the potential for virus transmission back to humans,” Scholz said in a statement. The state has given ranchers until the end of August to vaccinate. Press...

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Good plan! Now: where are those veterinary vaccines...?
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Comparison of Neutralizing Antibody Titers Elicited by mRNA and Adenoviral Vector Vaccine against SARS-CoV-2 Variants

The increasing prevalence of SARS-CoV-2 variants has raised concerns regarding possible decreases in vaccine efficacy. Here, neutralizing antibody titers elicited by mRNA-based and an adenoviral vector-based vaccine against variant pseudotyped viruses were compared. BNT162b2 and mRNA-1273-elicited antibodies showed modest neutralization resistance against Beta, Delta, Delta plus and Lambda variants whereas Ad26.COV2.S-elicited antibodies from a significant fraction of vaccinated individuals were of low neutralizing titer (IC50 <50). The data underscore the importance of surveillance for breakthrough infections that result in severe COVID-19 and suggest the benefit of a second immunization following Ad26.COV2.S to increase protection against the variants.

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Could the seasonal flu vaccine help protect against COVID-19? | Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance

Could the seasonal flu vaccine help protect against COVID-19? | Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance | Virology News | Scoop.it
A large study suggests the influenza vaccine may reduce the risk of some of the worst consequences of COVID-19.
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Watch a bubble pop like a blooming flower

Watch a bubble pop like a blooming flower | Virology News | Scoop.it
High-speed cameras operating at 20,000 frames per second, over 300 times faster than a human eye, show how some bubbles pop like blooming flowers.
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Hundreds of Ugandans given fake COVID-19 jabs: health officials

Hundreds of Ugandans given fake COVID-19 jabs: health officials | Virology News | Scoop.it
At least 800 people in Uganda were given fake coronavirus vaccines -- some injected with water -- in a scam that involved 'unscrupulous' doctors and health workers, government officials said Wednesday.
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'Magic mushroom' drug may repair neural links depression cuts

'Magic mushroom' drug may repair neural links depression cuts | Virology News | Scoop.it
Just one dose of psilocybin, a psychedelic drug in some mushrooms, repaired neural connections in mice that had been lost due to depression.
Ed Rybicki's insight:
I have drunk psilocybin-laced beer. Just saying. Very mellow B-)
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Pesticide-free clothing prevents 100% of mosquito bites

Pesticide-free clothing prevents 100% of mosquito bites | Virology News | Scoop.it
When a volunteer wore mosquito-resistant clothing in a cage with 200 live, disease-free insects, the material prevented 100% of mosquito bites.
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News media accidentally boosted Russian disinformation tweets

News media accidentally boosted Russian disinformation tweets | Virology News | Scoop.it
"...in their effort to turn heads, these legacy outlets were contributing to the growth of Russian sock puppet accounts."...
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Bacteria clean oil-polluted soil on old military bases

Bacteria clean oil-polluted soil on old military bases | Virology News | Scoop.it
Researchers have shown that bactera can help with soil remediation on now-defunct military bases in the Arctic where diesel has seeped into the ground.
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Emergence of measles during the COVID-19 pandemic threatens Pakistan’s children and the wider region

Emergence of measles during the COVID-19 pandemic threatens Pakistan’s children and the wider region | Virology News | Scoop.it

In a recent Correspondence by Durrheim et al., the authors described the looming threat of measles amid the COVID-19 pandemic1. We agree with the concerns raised by the authors, as shown by the alarming measles outbreak now ongoing in Pakistan, concurrent with the COVID-19 pandemic. Measles is one of the most contagious viral diseases and is a leading cause of morbidity and mortality, with around 2.6 million annual deaths worldwide. The basic reproduction number of 12 to 18 for the measles virus is the highest of any respiratory virus, and is much higher than that of the coronavirus SARS-CoV-2, the cause of COVID-191. 

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Nearly 50% of Israel's Delta variant COVID patients were fully vaccinated beforehand

Nearly 50% of Israel's Delta variant COVID patients were fully vaccinated beforehand | Virology News | Scoop.it
Nearly half of adults in Israel infected by the COVID-19 Delta variant were completely inoculated with the Pfizer vaccine before catching the new strain,...
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Fungi embrace human economic ideas in trade with hosts

Fungi embrace human economic ideas in trade with hosts | Virology News | Scoop.it
"...organisms such as fungi can exhibit competitive behavior similar to that in markets involving sophisticated human participants."...
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