Viruses as prey?

Zhongguo Xiong zxiong at ag.arizona.edu
Fri Sep 1 23:22:22 EST 1995


In article <4256js$f4s at cisunix1.dfci.harvard.edu> york at mbcrr.dfci.harvard.edu (Ian A. York) writes:

>I must have missed it, because I'm sure that someone in this 
>viruses-as-prey thread must have already pointed at hepatitis delta 
>virus, adeno-associated virus, and some of the plant viroids.  If not, 
>then I just have.

>Ian
Yes, hepatits delta virus is an example of a virus predator, however, viroids 
are not predators of viruses. Viroids are autonomous replicating RNA molecules 
without dependence on other viruses. On the other hand, there are several type 
of subviral agents that are parasites of viruses.

Satellite RNA and satellite viruses do "prey" on viruses in a way. They 
utilize the RNA replication machinary assembled by the host viruses for their 
own replication, much the same as the viruses utilizing the host protein and 
nucleic acid synthesis system. Another class of predators of viruses is 
defective intefering RNA, which derived from the host viruses, but does not 
code for any genes, a pure parasite.

Z. Xiong





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