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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Atomic force microscopy investigation of isolated virions of murine leukemia virus.

  • Author(s): Kuznetsov, YG
  • Low, A
  • Fan, H
  • McPherson, A
  • et al.

Virions of mouse leukemia virus spread on glass substrates were visualized by atomic force microscopy. The size distribution mode was 145 nm, significantly larger than that for human immunodeficiency virus particles. The distribution of particle sizes is broad, indicating that no two particles are likely identical in content or surface features. Virions possess knoblike protrusions, which may represent vestiges of budding from cell membranes. Particles which split open allowed imaging of intact cores with diameters of 65 nm. They also permitted estimation of viral shell thickness (35 to 40 nm) and showed the presence of a distinct trough between the shell and the core surface.

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