Influenza Virus : A Unique History And Evolution Pattern

1494 WordsDec 5, 20146 Pages
Each year, over 200,000 people are hospitalized due to flu related complications and thousands more are affected by it (Liao, Y et al., 2013). The flu is caused by the influenza virus which has a unique history and evolution pattern. This virus has been around for hundreds of years and has survived dozens of vaccines and different treatment methods. It has the ability to evolve and become resistant to vaccines using a variety of methods such as reassortment and antigenetic drift allowing it to still be a problem hundreds of years later. The influenza virus is part of the Orthomyxoviridae family and is spherical in shape with many spike-like projections of glycoproteins HA. The viral core is composed of eight negative-sense, single stranded RNA molecules surrounded by an envelope and each one encodes two proteins for the virus (Liao, Y et al., 2013). All of the different strands of the influenza virus follow a similar infection process. First, because viruses need a host cell to replicate, it enters the cell via receptor-mediated endocytosis and then the nucleus of the cell makes copies of the virus. These copies are then spread throughout the organism to infect more cells. The virus spreads to other organisms airborne or by contaminated surfaces. People usually feel flu symptoms the result of the body fighting the influenza virus (Liao, Y et al., 2013). The influenza virus has been well researched as a result of the commonness of it; however, the actual origins of the

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