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Herpes Virus - virion on white showing envelope, tegument, capsid and genome
HERPES VIRUS PARTICLE OR VIRION aquatint style

The translucent greenish spikes covering the surface represent the surface glycoproteins that are anchored in the viral envelope (greenish oily looking outer layer). This viral envelope is derived from host cell. Below that is the tegument, consisting of various proteins. Deep to the tegument is the icosahedral capsid (purple), that contains the DNA genome (red body in centre of virus).

HERPES VIRUSES: The Herpesviruses (family herpesviridae) are a very important group of double stranded DNA viruses that replicate inside the nuclei of their host cells. They have many characteristics in common including:
  • double stranded DNA genome (dsDNA)
  • icosahedral capsid
  • tegument
  • envelope with "glycoprotein spikes"
The herpesviruses cause many major diseases. Below is a list of the viruses with some of their associated diseases:

HERPESVIRUSES family Herpesviridae

Alphaherpesviruses subfamily Alphaherpesvirinae (neurotropic)
  • Herpes simplex virus (HSV-1 + HSV-2):
    • oral herpes (cold sores)
    • genital herpes
    • congenital herpes (neonatal herpes) can cause blindness and neurological problems
    • keratoconjunctivitis (ocular herpes)
    • herpes encephailitis
    • herpes meningitis
  • Varicella-Zoster Virus (VZV):
    • chickenpox
    • shingles (herpes zoster)

Betaherpesviruses subfamily Betaherpesvirinae
  • Cytomegaloviruses (CMV) or Human herpesvirus 5 (HHV-5)
  • Human Herpes Virus 6 (HHV-6):
    • exanthem subitum / sixth disease / roseola infantum
  • Human Herpes Virus 7 (HHV-7)

Gammaherpesviruses subfamily Gammaherpesvirinae (lymphotropic)
  • Epstein-Barr Virus (EBV):
    • Hodgkin's Disease
    • Burkitt's lymphoma
    • infectious mononucleosis (mono) or kissing disease
  • Human Herpes Virus 8 (HHV-8) or Kaposi's Sarcoma-Associated Herpesvirus (KSHV):
    • Kaposi's sarcoma


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