Electro-Optics of Viruses and Bacteriophage

  • Fritz S. Allen
Part of the NATO Advanced Study Institutes Series book series (NSSB, volume 64)


Bacteriophage and viruses have been given much attention by workers in the area of electro-optics. There are several reasons for this activity. The first is that these particles have the right sizes, shapes, and electrical anisotropies to exhibit considerable electro-optic effects. The second is that these particles offer a progression of structural complexity. It is possible to find very simple particles consisting of only a cylinder, to very complex particles which possess many structural components with movable and extendable portions. The third reason to study these materials is that they are simple systems which embody many of the essential genetic processes of life. Whether virus particles are to be considered alive or not, they are very near the threshold of life. They provide an ideal means to study many of the steps important in molecular biology. The area of electro-optics of bacteriophage and viruses has been previously reviewed by Houssier and Fredericq (1) and by Maestre (2). In this survey we shall deal mainly with developments which have appeared since the time of the previous contributions.


Tobacco Mosaic Virus Diffusion Constant Phage Particle Fast Form Translational Diffusion 
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Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1981

Authors and Affiliations

  • Fritz S. Allen
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of ChemistryUniversity of New MexicoAlbuquerqueUSA

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