Ionic bonding, the mechanism of viral uptake by shellfish mucus.


An investigation was conducted to determine the processes involved in the contamination of shellfish by viruses. Results of binding-release studies show that the process involves the attachment of viruses to mucus secreted, and then ingested, by shellfish during feeding. Analysis of the mucus-virus bond involved selective degradation of the mucus and use of chemical agents to block carboxyl and sulfate groups on the mucus. Results obtained indicate that the attachment of virus to mucus is primarily ionic and involves the binding of viral particles to sulfate radicals on the mucopolysaccharide moiety of shellfish mucus.

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