Microorganisms including viruses are an important part of general science for UPSC exam. It is important not only from the science point of view but also because diseases and how to contain them are major topics in social issues and even polity/governance. This article tells you all about viruses for IAS exam.

Viruses are the border between living and nonliving organisms. And they act as living organisms when they are present in a host organism (cell), Otherwise, they are nonliving organisms.they are crystal-like structures when they are outside , and becomes infecting and lethal when they enter  a living cell. Some viruses partially contain DNA (DeoxyRibonucleic acid) or RNA (Ribonucleic acid) with single or double strands. It can get into DNA of the host organism.   Viruses are classified on the basis of genetic material. -ds DNA( polio), dsRNA, ssDNA, ssRNA( orthomyxoviruses). Viruses cause diseases among organisms and plants. Potato mosaic and tobacco mosaic are the common viral diseases among plants, chicken pox, AIDS and Ebola are the common viral animal diseases.   Viroids and prions are the infecting proteins and RNA, they lack cell covers like a virus or any other eukaryotes. They are discovered by T Dienner in 1971. and these are also responsible for diseases among animals Ex- mad cow disease  

Question from Microorganisms UPSC

Which of the following statements is /are correct?

  1. Viruses lack enzymes necessary for the generation of energy
  2. Viruses can be cultured in any synthetic medium
  3. Viruses are transmitted from one organism to another by biological vectors only  
  1. 1 only
  2. 2 and 3 only
  3. 1 and 3 only
  4. 1, 2 and 3

Answer: a

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