CLINICAL CASES
49
LTR
gag
pol
LTR
Figure 5-2.
Simplified HIV genome.
second strand of DNA. This double-stranded DNA is transported into the
nucleus and is recognized by the
viral enzyme integrase,
which catalyzes the
insertion of the viral DNA into the host genome thus establishing a permanent
infection. The final step is the transcription of the integrated viral DNA pro-
ducing a large amount of
viral RNA, which is packaged in a capsid
along
with the other essential proteins and can bud from the plasma membrane.
Based on the pathogenesis of HIV, it is very important to understand the tran-
scription mechanism of this virus. The HIV life cycle can be simplified and
drawn out as shown in Figure 5-3.
Figure 5-3.
Life cycle of HIV.
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