Theoretical studies on assembly, physical stability and dynamics of viruses

Subcell Biochem. 2013;68:553-95. doi: 10.1007/978-94-007-6552-8_19.


All matter has to obey the general laws of physics and living matter is not an exception. Viruses have not only learnt how to cope with them, but have managed to use them for their own survival. In this chapter we will review some of the exciting physics behind viruses and discuss simple physical models that can shed some light on different aspects of the viral life cycle and viral properties. In particular, we will focus on how the structure and shape of the capsid, its assembly and stability, and the entry and exit of viral particles and their genomes can be understood using fundamental physics theories.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Humans
  • Models, Theoretical*
  • Virus Assembly*
  • Virus Physiological Phenomena*
  • Viruses / chemistry*
  • Viruses / metabolism*