Visualisering – HiV

Litt på etterskudd dog, men visualiseringen er mesterlig utført.

Visualisering av hiv-viruset

Visualization goes viral

The winners of the 2010 International Science and Engineering Visualization Challenge, sponsored jointly by the journal Science and the National Science Foundation, share spectacular photographs, graphics, illustrations and videos that engage viewers by conveying the complex substance of science through different art forms. This detailed 3-D model of the human immunodeficiency virus won first place in the illustration category. It was produced by Ivan Konstantinov, Yury Stefanov, Aleksander Kovalevsky and Yegor Voronin of the Visual Science Co.

For de som er mer interessert enn normalt i virus så er en liten bakgrunn her, med flere visualiseringsbilder;

This Human Immunodeficiency Virus model summarizes the results from more then 100 latest scientific publications in the fields of virology, X-ray analysis and NMR spectroscopy. The depicted spatial configurations of 17 different viral and cellular proteins found in HIV particle are in strict accordance with known 3D-structures.

Viral membrane in the model includes 160 thousand lipid molecules of 8 different types in the proportion found in the HIV particle.

This model of HIV virion is put on the cover of the special issue of Nature Medicine (September 8, 2010) prepared by the Global HIV Vaccine Enterprise. In this release, the Enterprise publishes the strategic research plan to accelerate the development of vaccines against HIV (the «2010 Plan»).The 2010 Plan is developed by the Council of the Global HIV Vaccine Enterprise with the participation of hundreds of scientists, policy-makers, funders and advocates worldwide.

Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) is a retrovirus, member of the lentivirus genus. HIV infects and destroys cells of the human immune system (CD4+ T-lymphocytes, macrophages and dendritic cells). The decrease of CD4+ T-lymphocytes level causes the development of acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS). There are two major species of HIV: HIV-1 and HIV-2, which is less common.

HIV virion is a roughly spherical particle with a diameter between 100 and 180 nm. Virion is surrounded by cell-derived lipid membrane containing surface proteins. Some of these proteins are products of viral genome (surface glycoprotein gp120/gp41) and others are captured from the host cell during viral budding (e.g. ICAM-1, HLA-DR1, CD55 and some others). The gp120/gp41 glycoprotein interacts with receptors on cell surface promoting fusion of virus and cell membranes. Other surface proteins found in HIV perform supporting functions.

Trimers of MA (p17) protein form a layer directly under the lipid membrane. Inside the HIV particle there is a cone-shaped capsid, composed of CA (p24) proteins. Capsid contains two copies of positive single-stranded viral RNA bound by NC (p7) protein and enzymes necessary for virus replication (reverse transcriptase and integrase).

The HIV genome is approximately 10000 nucleotides long and contains 9 genes, which encode 15 different proteins. The most important viral genes (open reading frames) are Gag, Pol and Env. Gag encodes the p55 protein, which is subsequently cut into structural proteins: MA, CA, NC and p6. Pol reading frame encodes integrase, protease, and reverse transcriptase. Env encodes the two subunits of the surface glycoprotein complex. Other genes (Tat, Rev, Vif, Vpr, Vpu and Nef) produce accessory proteins, which modulate host cell metabolism and facilitate different stages of HIV life cycle.

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