Size isn't only mystery of huge virus

Size isn't only mystery of huge virus

Strange replication method and unusual genetic sequence among the mysteries

By Cristy Gelling, 14:54 PM July 30, 2013

The largest virus ever identified has been found on the seafloor off the coast of Chile. Pandoravirus salinus is about twice as long as the previous record holder, Megavirus chilensis, with a genome that is twice as large. That makes P. salinus larger than the smallest bacteria.

Beyond its impressive size, the Pandoravirus is strange in some other ways. Rather than reproducing by first making a viral coat and then filling it in or by building its coat around genetic material, P. salinus builds...

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