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Retrovirus

Consequences Of Retroviral Infection

Retroviral infection can result in several different outcomes for the virus and the cell. Retroviruses are capable of inducing immunosuppressive, autoimmune, and neurological illnesses. Some retroviruses, such as the lentiviruses and the spumaviruses, are capable of directly killing cells. Cytopathic (cell-killing) effects in infected T cells and cells in the brain may account for the profound immune deficiencies and neurological diseases induced by HIV and related lentiviruses.

Retroviruses are also capable of inducing latent infections, in which the virus is dormant, or persistent infections, in which low levels of the virus are continuously produced. These capabilities explain the life-long nature of retroviral infections, and render the diseases induced by these pathogens extremely difficult to treat.

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Medicine EncyclopediaGenetics in Medicine - Part 4Retrovirus - Characteristics, Reverse Transcriptase, Retrovirus Replication Cycle, Consequences Of Retroviral Infection, Retroviruses And Cancer