Biology as Poetry: Virology

Bacteriophage Ecology Group

Nucleocapsid

The combination of virus genome and proteins containing the genome but excluding especially envelopes.

That is, a combination of the virus nucleic acid and virion capsid proteins. For naked (nonenveloped) viruses, the nucleocapsid is basically the virion itself. For enveloped viruses, however, it is the portion of the virion that is enclosed by the envelope.

For enveloped viruses, the process of infection begins with the uptake of the nucleocapsid into the target cell's cytoplasm. The uncoating step is then the separation of the virus genome from the capsid.

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