Bacteria, Viruses, and Prions: Cell Structure and Reproduction

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Commonly known for causing diseases in humans, bacteria are also a valuable key in a healthy lifestyle and other aspects of life. From manufacturing Vitamin K to giving yogurt its tangy taste, bacteria come in many shapes, sizes and forms. Bacteria lack a well-defined nuclei and membrane-bound organelles, and with chromosomes containing a single closed circle of DNA, they are categorized as Prokaryotes. Each bacterial cell typically has the same structures that have a certain function within the cell. Within a Nucleoid DNA, RNA and some proteins are found. The other structures include: genospore, plasmid, cytoplasm, Endospores, Ribosomes, Storage Granule, cell envelope, a capsule, pili and flagella. The three main types of bacteria are …show more content…
Without the host cell, a virus would not be able to function. They are obligate intracellular parasites which means they can only reproduce inside a living cell. Each virus contains two parts. An outer capsid that has protein subunits and an inner core that has nucleic acid, either DNA or RNA but not both. Some viruses have spikes that are formed from a glycoprotein and help in attaching the virus to the host cell. Classified by the type of organisms they infect; viruses can infect animals, plants or bacteria. Viruses have two different shapes, rods and spheres.
A bacteriophage or a phage, is simply a virus that reproduces. The spike or outer capsid on a virus attaches to a receptor on the host cell’s surface because if a virus cannot attach to the host cell, it will not be able to infect the host. Once the virus is inside the host cell, the viral genome takes over the host cell’s metabolic machinery; ribosomes, transfer RNA and ATP for reproduction. The first part of reproduction of viruses is called the Lytic Cycle. The Lytic Cycle can be divided into five stages, attachment, penetration, biosynthesis, maturation, and release. In attachment the capsid combines with the receptor on the bacterial cell wall. In penetration a viral enzyme eats away part of the cell wall and the viral DNA is injected into the bacteria cell wall. Biosynthesis begins after the virus

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