Principles of Molecular Virology

Principles of Molecular Virology

5th Edition - September 2, 2011

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  • Author: Alan J. Cann
  • eBook ISBN: 9780123849403

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Principles of Molecular Virology, Fifth Edition, provides an introduction to modern virology. Viruses are submicroscopic, obligate intracellular parasites that are more diverse than all the bacterial, plant, and animal kingdoms combined. The book examines protein-protein, protein-nucleic acid, and protein-lipid interactions, which control the structure of virus particles; the ways in which viruses infect cells; how viruses replicate; and the effects of virus infection on host organisms. The book begins with a history of virology, tracing the development of knowledge and research on virology. The remaining seven chapters deal with the function and formation of virus particles; the structure and complexity of virus genomes; virus replication; gene expression; virus infections; the effects of virus infection on the body and the body’s response to infection; and subviral agents, such as satellites, viroids, and prions. The text concludes with three appendices that feature a glossary and abbreviations; a classification of subcellular infectious agents; and an outline of the history of virology.

Key Features

  • Completely rewritten and updated
  • Clear and easy to understand
  • Examples covering important ideas in virology
  • All new illustrations


Undergraduates and graduates in virology, molecular biology and microbiology; Medical students and infectious disease clinicians and immunologists; Those entering the virology research area, including plant virology and AIDS research

Table of Contents

  • Preface to the Fifth Edition

    Chapter 1 Introduction

    What Are Viruses?

    Are viruses alive?

    The History of Virology

    Living Host Systems

    Cell Culture Methods

    Serological/Immunological Methods

    Ultrastructural Studies

    Molecular Biology


    Chapter 2 Particles

    The Function and Formation of Virus Particles

    Capsid symmetry and virus architecture

    Helical capsids

    Icosahedral (isometric) capsids

    Enveloped viruses

    Complex virus structures

    Protein-nucleic acid interactions and genome packaging

    Virus receptors: recognition and binding

    Other interactions of the virus capsid with the host cell


    Chapter 3 Genomes

    The Structure and Complexity of Virus Genomes

    Molecular genetics

    Virus genetics

    Virus mutants

    Genetic interactions between viruses

    Nongenetic interactions between viruses

    Small DNA genomes

    Large DNA genomes

    Positive-strand RNA viruses

    Negative-strand RNA viruses

    Segmented and multipartite virus genomes

    Reverse transcription and transposition

    Evolution and epidemiology


    Chapter 4 Replication

    Overview of Virus Replication

    Investigation of Virus Replication

    The Replication Cycle




    Genome replication and gene expression





    Chapter 5 Expression

    Expression of Genetic Information

    Control of Prokaryote Gene Expression

    Control of Expression in Bacteriophage ?

    Control of Eukaryote Gene Expression

    Genome Coding Strategies

    Class I: Double-stranded DNA

    Class II: Single-stranded DNA

    Class III: Double-stranded RNA

    Class IV: Single-stranded (+)sense RNA

    Class V: Single-stranded (-)sense RNA

    Class VI: Single-stranded (+)sense RNA with DNA intermediate

    Class VII: Double-stranded DNA with RNA intermediate

    Transcriptional Control of Expression

    Posttranscriptional Control of Expression


    Chapter 6 Infection

    Virus Infections of Plants

    Immune Responses to Virus Infections in Animals

    Viruses and Apoptosis


    Evasion of Immune Responses by Viruses

    Inhibition of MHC-I-restricted antigen presentation

    Inhibition of MHC-II-restricted antigen presentation

    Inhibition of natural killer cell lysis

    Interference with apoptosis

    Inhibition of cytokine action

    Evasion of humoral immunity

    Evasion of the complement cascade

    Virus-Host Interactions

    The Course of Virus Infections

    Abortive infection

    Acute infection

    Chronic infection

    Persistent infection

    Latent infection

    Prevention and Therapy of Virus Infection

    RNA Interference (RNAi)

    Virus Vectors and Gene Therapy

    Chemotherapy of Virus Infections


    Chapter 7 Pathogenesis

    Mechanisms of Cellular Injury

    Viruses and Immunodeficiency

    Virus-Related Diseases

    Bacteriophages and Human Disease

    Cell Transformation by Viruses

    Cell Transformation by Retroviruses

    Cell Transformation by DNA Viruses

    Viruses and Cancer

    New and Emergent Viruses




    Chapter 8 Subviral Agents: Genomes without Viruses, Viruses without Genomes

    Satellites and Viroids


    Pathology of prion diseases

    TSE in Animals


    Transmissible mink encephalopathy (TME)

    Feline spongiform encephalopathy (FSE)

    Chronic wasting disease (CWD)

    Bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE)

    Human TSES

    Molecular Biology of Prions


    Appendix 1: Glossary and Abbreviations

    Appendix 2: Classification of Subcellular Infectious Agents

    Appendix 3: The History of Virology


Product details

  • No. of pages: 320
  • Language: English
  • Copyright: © Academic Press 2011
  • Published: September 2, 2011
  • Imprint: Academic Press
  • eBook ISBN: 9780123849403

About the Author

Alan J. Cann

Alan J. Cann
Dr. Alan J. Cann has worked in both the U.K. and U.S.A. teaching undergraduate, postgraduate, and medical students. He is currently a Senior Lecturer in Biological Sciences at the University of Leicester where his research interests include pedagogic research and science communication.

Affiliations and Expertise

Senior Lecturer, Department of Microbiology and Immunology, University of Leicester, UK

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