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Solid-Like Character of Virus Solutions

D. W. Kupke and J. W. Beams
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
Vol. 74, No. 5 (May, 1977), pp. 1993-1996
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/67152
Page Count: 4
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Since scans are not currently available to screen readers, please contact JSTOR User Support for access. We'll provide a PDF copy for your screen reader.
Solid-Like Character of Virus Solutions
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Abstract

The solid-like behavior of turnip yellow mosaic virus solutions following the extrusion of viral RNA in alkali was observed with a torsion-fiber balance developed for the purpose. This method provided a direct measurement of the yield stresses required to break or liquefy these solutions. The yield stresses were found to increase and to be less time dependent with increasing concentrations of the virus and they were maximal at room temperatures. If the virus had been damaged, as by freeze-thaw, little or no solid-like behavior could be demonstrated. Purified viral capsids, with or without added RNA, were also inactive. The values for the yield stresses were of the same order as the value reported previously with the use of a magnetic suspension viscometer; hence, the apparent coherency appears unrelated to the magnetic fields generated by the latter instrument. These solutions behaved as typical liquids after the required stress was applied [about 0.005 to 0.17 dyne cm-2 (0.05 to 1.7 μ N cm-2)], these forces being smaller than those usually conferred by ordinary handling.

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