Microcheck 158

Interferons induce cells in the vicinity of a virally infected cell to prepare to cease protein synthesis should they become infected with virus. Double-stranded RNA functions as the signal to a cell that it is infected with a virus.

■ What activities does interferon gamma have that interferons alpha and beta do not?

■ What is the source of interferon that is used therapeutically?

■ Considering that retroviruses have an RNA genome, why would their replication not generate double-stranded RNA?

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