Comparing Viruses to Cells
By Maria Soria and Vivian Liu
Characterstics of Life-Compare and Contrast
1. All living things are composed of one or more cells.
Viruses are not made up of cells, they are much simpler than cells. However, they do contain gentic material like other living things.
Viruses are able to reproduce witht their , but reproduction requires the aid of a host cell. Viruses will either go through the lytic or lysogenic cycle to reproduce/ make copies of themselves. The lytic cycle will copy the virus much quicker than the lysogenic cycle will.
3. Maintains Homeostasis
Viruses don't maintain homeostasis because they are not made of and don't undergo regular cell activities. Homeostasis involves keeping your body balanced while viruses depend on the host to survive.
4. Respond to the Environment
Viruses respond to their environment, but only with the help of the host because they are not living. The virus responds when it enters the body and replicated when it invades the cells. Basically, the viruses responses depends solely on the host cell.
5. Growth and Development
Viruses don't have this characteristic because the replication of a virus is simply a recreation of the same thing, so there is no sign of growth or development. Living cells actaully change in size and makeup. Also, there are different kinds of cells being produced, not the same one over and over.
6. Obtains and uses Energy
Viruses don't obtain energy because they only inject their genetic material into the host. Everything that a virus does is made possible by ATP found in the host cell, so that is how viruses are powered.
Viruses do exhibit evolution because the few viruses that are resistant to a certain immune response will make more copies of their kind, which results in a population of stronger and more resistant virus.
8. Genetic Code
Viruses contain DNA, which is their genetic makeup that they will later inject into the host cell.
5. Antibiotics don't work on the flu because antibiotics only work for sicknesses caused by bacterial infections. Flus and colds are caused by viruses, so antibiotics don't work on them.
6. Viruses like HIV/AIDS develop through the lysogenic cycle, meaning that the virus hides inside the DNA and replicates when the cell does. This process is slower and the symptoms will start showing when the cycle changes from lysogenic to lytic.