Virus latency

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Virus latency is the ability of a pathogenic virus to lie dormant within a cell (latent infection).

Remain for life - virus can remain dormant for months - years - and can be reactivated by immune response, other infections, chemical or physical agents eg: UV light.

Examples of latent infection: Herpes simplex type 1 (cold sores), Herpes varicella/zoster (chicken pox, shingles), HIV (Aids).


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