Menu

Image of the Day: Giant Virus

The Tupanvirus is named for the South American Guarani God of Thunder.

Feb 28, 2018
The Scientist Staff, The Scientist Staff

Scanning electron microscope (SEM) image of viruses named Tupanvirus soda lakeMICROSCOPY CENTER OF THE FEDERAL UNIVERSITY OF MINAS GERAIS

Researchers reported the discovery of two giant viruses, called Tupanviruses, yesterday (February 27) in Nature Communications. They found one strain in a highly alkaline “soda” lake in Brazil, and the other in sediment at a depth of 3,000 meters in the Atlantic Ocean off the coast of Brazil. At up to 2.3 micrometers in length, the Tupanviruses are some of the largest viruses found to date. They are related to Acanthamoeba polyphaga mimivirus (APMV).

The Tupanviruses have the most complete protein-building apparatus discovered in a virus, “with up to 70 tRNA, 20 aaRS [aminoacyl tRNA synthetases], 11 factors for all translation steps, and factors related to tRNA/mRNA maturation and ribosome protein modification,” according to the study. Tupanviruses, like APMV, infect amoeba.

J. Abrahão et al., “Tailed giant Tupanvirus possesses the most complete translational apparatus of the known virosphere,” Nat Commun, doi:10.1038/s41467-018-03168-1, 2018.

Correction (February 28): We incorrectly stated that the virus can produce all 20 amino acids. Rather, it possesses 20 aminoacyl tRNA synthetases. The Scientist regrets the error.

January 2019

Cannabis on Board

Research suggests ill effects of cannabinoids in the womb

Marketplace

Sponsored Product Updates

WIN a VIAFLO 96/384 to supercharge your microplate pipetting!
WIN a VIAFLO 96/384 to supercharge your microplate pipetting!
INTEGRA Biosciences is offering labs the chance to win a VIAFLO 96/384 pipette. Designed to simplify plate replication, plate reformatting or reservoir-to-plate transfers, the VIAFLO 96/384 allows labs without the space or budget for an expensive pipetting robot to increase the speed and throughput of routine tasks.
FORMULATRIX® digital PCR technology to be acquired by QIAGEN
FORMULATRIX® digital PCR technology to be acquired by QIAGEN
FORMULATRIX has announced that their digital PCR assets, including the CONSTELLATION® series of instruments, is being acquired by QIAGEN N.V. (NYSE: QGEN, Frankfurt Stock Exchange: QIA) for up to $260 million ($125 million upfront payment and $135 million of milestones).  QIAGEN has announced plans for a global launch in 2020 of a new series of digital PCR platforms that utilize the advanced dPCR technology developed by FORMULATRIX combined with QIAGEN’s expertise in assay development and automation.
Application of CRISPR/Cas to the Generation of Genetically Engineered Mice
Application of CRISPR/Cas to the Generation of Genetically Engineered Mice
With this application note from Taconic, learn about the power that the CRISPR/Cas system has to revolutionize the field of custom mouse model generation!
Translational Models of Obesity, Dysmetabolism, Diabetes, and Complications
Translational Models of Obesity, Dysmetabolism, Diabetes, and Complications
This webinar, from Crown Bioscience, presents a unique continuum of translational dysmetabolic platforms that more closely mimic human disease. Learn about using next-generation rodent and spontaneously diabetic non-human primate models to accurately model human-relevant disease progression and complications related to obesity and diabetes here!