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Whats with Viruses

  1. Feb 15, 2008 #1
    I am new at this but i want to make sure i know what i am talking about
    I have researched this but i haven't gotten a straight answer

    1. When you get sick(common cold/virus) what happens?
    Does virus go into each cell and take its nutrients.
    Then after that does it keep on spreading and then your body tries to kill it and then you get fever and runny stuffy nose.
    2. When you take antibiotics how does it kill bacteria?

    and are there different types of bacteria so wouldn't they be the same as viruses

    Also i remember long ago i heard one of them was living is that true or not.
  2. jcsd
  3. Feb 15, 2008 #2


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    1] Virii, because they are bits of DNA, are able to sneak past cells defenses and enter the cell. There, they hijack the cell's machinery and force the cell to start reproducing the virus' DNA. When your body begins sensing these foreign bodies, the defense system is activated - the one we notice most is a big increase in histamines, which pump fluids into your tissues and mucous membranes. This is designed to (belatedly) trap more irritants entering the body.

    2] Antibiotics are carefully chosen poisons that target bacteria. They interfere with the bacterium's ability to work, such as constructing its cell wall. This is also why antibiotics don't work on virii - virii are not working machinery.

    There are as many kinds of virus as there are bacteria.

    Virii are on the verge of life. Many consider them non-life. They are simply bits of DNA. They cannot work without hijacking a living cell.
    Last edited: Feb 15, 2008
  4. Feb 17, 2008 #3
    so if well where do these virii attack
    because if they attack in the lower part of your body then when you sneeze would you still get colored mucus

    ok and if i get this straight bacteria is a very simple machine
    if they are so simple can't humans create something to stop them for good
  5. Feb 17, 2008 #4


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    I may be mistaken but catching a virus does not produce coloured mucous at all. The byproduct of bactgerial infection is the carcasses of bacteria, whose byprodiucts are poisons and have (colour and taste). The offal of a virus is your own cells.

    Do not confuse simple with easy. Humans may be the most complex critters on the planet, but bacteria are by far the most successful - they've done quite nicely for 2 billion years.
  6. Mar 8, 2008 #5


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    (1) The virus infects a cell, tricks the cell into making more copies of that virus until the cell ruptures and sends those new virii out to infect other cells. Fevers, runny noses, etc. are some of our bodies attempts to get rid of the virus. Of course, some types of virus use runny noses as a way to spread themselves to new hosts.

    (2) There are countless types of virii and bacteria. A virus is a bit of DNA or RNA with a protein coating. So they are often thought of as non-living. A bacterium is an independent living cell (single celled organism). A cell is not exactly a simple machine. That aside, bacteria are hard to get rid of because they reproduce extremely quickly and they also evolve quickly. New strains appear and existing ones evolve defenses to attacks on them (which is why antibiotics can become less effective over time).
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