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General properties

  1. Smallest known infective agents
  2. Obligate intracellular parasites
  3. Vary in size from 10-300nm therefore, cannot be seen by light microscope
  4. Carries its own genetic information in the form of either RNA or DNA, but not both
  5. Viruses have no metabolic activity outside susceptible host cells. They do not possess protein-synthesizing apparatus therefore, cannot multiply in inanimate media but only inside living cells where it takes over the host protein-synthesizing machinery to synthesize new virus particles  
A. Structure and chemical composition of viruses

Viruses consist of nucleic acid core surrounded by a protein coat called capsid

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