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The Role of Geometric Constraints  in Spherical Virus Construction

  • Thursday, March 5, 2020
  • 3:40 PM–4:30 PM
  • North Hall 276

David Wilson, Kalamazoo College

Geometric tools play an important role in characterizing spherical viruses. The most notable of these tools has been the Triangulation (T) Number introduced by Caspar and Klug.  Building upon their toolset, we have discovered that nearly all spherical viruses use a common set of locations along 15 icosahedral great circles to place their protruding features.  We will explore how the location of virus protrusions suggests further limitations through AEIS configurations, of a virus’s available internal geometric orientations. We believe that many viruses adopt AEIS to increase their stability, though this comes with a price, as they must now meet radial constraints in addition to their rotational ones.

Refreshments precede the talk at 3:30 p.m. in NH 282.

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