Role of Toll-like receptors in detecting Flaviviruses

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Since the beginning of time, man has been in a constant battle with a foe that is smaller than the smallest cell on earth, viruses. Viruses have caused many epidemics throughout history and the fight continues today. There are many families of viruses, but one has shown to be especially infective in humans. The family I speak of is the genus Flavivridea, which is the family of flaviviruses. The first flavivirus to be identified was yellow fever. Flavi in latin means yellow, which is where the family name comes from. One of the most damaging epidemics in our history took place in the early 1800s. Nepoleon sent 30,000 troops to North America to look over French land. In less than three years yellow fever decimated his troops to less than 5,000. This was so damaging that napoleon decided to sell the land to the United States and this is how we acquired the Louisiana Purchase [1]. This and other epidemics of this extant are the reason scientists conducting immense research to prevent catastrophes of this nature from occurring again. The Flavivirus has been studied for years and there are some features that distinguish it from other viruses. First of all, these viruses are considered arboviruses. This means that the mode of transmission of the virus is from arthropods, such as ticks and mosquitoes. There are many types of flavirus, but the most well known and dangerous are West Nile virus, Dengue virus, Yellow fever, and Tick-borne encephalitis. These viruses all have similar symptoms: fever, headache and malaise. In severe cases these viruses can cause encephalitis, which is swelling of the brain, and hemorrhagic fever, which is severe fever which causes capillaries to hemorrhage and cause internal bleeding [2]. Since these last tw...

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