Table of contents

December 2016 - Volume 16 - 6

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Credit AMI IMAGES/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

La Crosse encephalitis virus. Coloured transmission electron micrograph (TEM) of La Cross (LAC) encephalitis virus particles (virions). Each particle consists of an icosahedral protein coat (capsid, yellow rings) surrounding single-stranded ribonucleic acid (RNA), the virus’ genetic material. This virus is an arbovirus (arthropod-borne virus), being transmitted to humans by mosquitos, but it can also spread through bites from infected mammals. In humans, symptoms can be severe, the worst being seizures, coma, paralysis and permanent brain damage from encephalitis (brain inflammation). The virus was first discovered in 1963 in La Crosse, Wisconsin, USA.