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1) What is a virus?
Any of various simple submicroscopic parasites of plants, animals, and bacteria that often cause disease and that consist essentially of a core of RNA or DNA surrounded by a protein coat. Unable to replicate without a host cell, viruses are typically not considered living organisms.
2) Name of virus to be studied- Avian flu virus
3) Background research
Avian influenza is caused by type A influenza virus. The symptoms can vary from a mild disease with little or no mortality to a highly fatal, rapidly spreading epidemic (highly pathogenic avian influenza) depending on the infecting virus strain, host factors, and environmental stressors.
More avian influenza viruses have been isolated from ducks than any other species although most free-flying birds may also be infected including shorebirds, gulls and other seabirds. Waterfowl are more resistant to avian influenza than are domestic poultry. Viruses that cause no obvious disease in waterfowl can be highly pathogenic (rapidly fatal) in domestic poultry. Among domestic poultry species, turkeys are more commonly infected than are chickens.
Waterfowl act as a reservoir of avian influenza virus by carrying the virus in their intestinal tract and shedding it in their feces. Avian influenza viruses are spread to susceptible birds through inhalation of influenza particles in nasal and respiratory secretions and from contact with the feces of infected birds.
Signs including coughing, sneezing ruffled feathers, swollen heads, and nervous signs like depression and diarrhea may occur together or singly. In some cases, birds die rapidly without clinical signs of disease.
There are two anti-viral drugs, Amantadine and Rimantadine....
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