How Viruses Invade Our Bodies

We may hate viruses for all the nasty things they can do to our bodies--I certainly do. For all their virulence, however, viruses are brilliant pieces of machinery if we think about them from a molecular and genetic point of view. First of all, viruses are too small for their behavior to be driven by anything like instinct and drives. Instead, they seem to be driven purely by chemistry, but their genetic composition makes them master this chemical environment as if they meant business. Scientists are not quite sure how viruses originated yet, but what we do know is fascinating... and frightening.

Unlike bacteria and other larger organisms, viruses don't even have the ability to replicate themselves (and they can still kick our butts!). They solve this major replication problem by becoming the ultimate parasites: they hijack the cells in our bodies and turn the machinery and metabolism of their host cells (you and me) into factories that churn out and assemble multiple copies of the virus in question... That's right, we are their bitches :)


If that caught your attention, you might also be interested in how tumors grow.
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