The virus of poliomyelitis is one of the smallest and best studied animal viruses. Its apparent simplicity is striking: the virion is small, containing only a single strand of RNA and four species of protein. The RNA itself is small and seems simple, containing sufficient information only for about 10 average size proteins. This has furnished hopes and expectations that the functions of this virus some day can be completely described, and that the full understanding of poliovirus biology may provide models for studies of more complex systems. Its apparent simplicity and the fact that it is the agent of an emotionally provocative epidemic disease were important stimuli for the study of poliovirus. Many other diseases are caused by close relatives of the polioviruses: the common cold, hepatitis A, certain types of enteritis in humans, and the foot and mouth disease of live stock. It is expected that attempts to control these diseases should profit also from information obtained in studies on the poliovirus.
KeywordsCapsid Protein Mouth Disease Viral Capsid Protein Apparent Simplicity Host Protein Synthesis
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