Noroviruses are perhaps the perfect human pathogen - Aron Hall


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The Norovirus: A Study in Puked Perfection

What is this fearsome bug, you may be asking, and why isn’t it the subject of a Hollywood horror movie?

Noroviruses are one of virology’s great open secrets. In a recent issue of The Journal of Infectious Diseases, Aron Hall of the Centers for Disease Control declared, “Noroviruses are perhaps the perfect human pathogen.”

Here’s what inspires awe in scientists like Hall.

Each norovirus carries just nine protein-coding genes (you have about 20,000). Even with that skimpy genetic toolkit, noroviruses can break the locks on our cells, slip in, and hack our own DNA to make new noroviruses. The details of this invasion are sketchy, alas, because scientists haven’t…

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Last Updated : Tuesday, November 26, 2019