This essay Are Viruses Alive has a total of 322 words and 2 pages.
Are Viruses Alive
Are Viruses Alive?
By Bo Howes
The word virus means “poi-son” in Latin. Viruses are submicro-scopic intracellular parasites that consist of either RNA or DNA, and a protective coat of protein. It has caused countless diseases in vari-ous organisms. The term virus was first used in the 1890s to describe agents that caused diseases that were smaller than bacteria. The ex-istence of viruses was established in 1892, when Russian scientist Dimity I. Ivanovsky discovered microscopic particles later known as the tobacco mosaic virus.
Over the years, scientists have debated whether viruses are alive. Some scientists argue that the virus is lifeless. On the other hand, other scientists argue that viruses are lifeforms and should be classified into a kingdom. However, many sci-entists have agreed that things must have seven characteristics of life to be considered alive. The character-istics of life are all living things are composed of cells, all organisms are organized at cellular and molecular
levels, energy use, and response to the environment, growth, reproduc-tion, and adaptation.
From research and observa-tion, scientists have found that vi-ruses can perform some of the life processes. They found that viruses have organization, the ability to re-produce, and adaptations. First, they found that viruses are generally organized and composed of a nu-cleic acid core, either RNA or DNA, surrounded by protein. Next, they found that viruses could reproduce. It does not reproduce by sexual or asexual production, but by injecting its genetic material into the nucleus of a living cell. Finally, they found out that viruses have adaptations. They have the ability to mutate into different strains to resist man-made drugs.
In short, these are some views and facts about the virus. To this day, scientists are still fiercely debating whether viruses are alive. Should we consider them alive since they perform some life processes or simply consider them lifeless?
Topics Related to Are Viruses Alive
Virology, Virus, Non-cellular life, Tobacco mosaic virus, Introduction to viruses
Essays Related to Are Viruses Alive
AIDS - What's new ? AIDS - What\'s new ? ------------------- Is the message getting through? We already know enough about AIDS to prevent its spread, but ignorance, complacency, fear and bigotry continue to stop many from taking adequate precautions. We know enough about how the infection is transmitted to protect ourselves from it without resorting to such extremes as mandatory testing, enforced quarantine or total celibacy. But too few people are heeding the AIDS message. Perhaps many simply don\'t like or want
Biological Viruses: All Time EnemiesBiological Viruses: All Time Enemies First came fever. Then Hamid Mansaray, a young nurse\'s aide at a remote African hospital, began to hemorrhage. Blood erupted from his nose and mouth. It burst out of capillaries beneath his skin and eyes. By the time I reached the village of Panguma in Serria Leone, Mansaray lay isolated in a special ward. Doctors had diagnosed an obscure illness called Lassa fever. Its cause was a virus, an infective agent so small that 100,000 of them clumped together woul
Jonas SalkJonas Salk Jonas Salk (1914-1995) Jonas Salk was the first born of Daniel B. Salk and Dora Press. He was born in New York, New York on October 28, 1914. He died in La Jolla, California on June 23, 1995. Salk attended Townsend Harris High School for the gifted and received his B.A. from College of the City of New York in 1934. He received his M.D. from New York University in 1930 and interned at Mount Sinai Hospital, where he studied immunology. He was recognized as an able scientist by his teach