1.47 - Viruses and virus-like particles in biotechnology: fundamentals and applications

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


Abstract Although viruses are simple biological systems, they are capable of evolving highly efficient techniques for infecting cells, expressing their genomes, and generating new copies of themselves. It is possible to genetically manipulate most of the different classes of known viruses in order to produce recombinant viruses that express foreign proteins. Recombinant viruses have been used in gene therapy to deliver selected genes into higher organisms, in vaccinology and immunotherapy, and as important research tools to study the structure and function of these proteins. Virus-like particles (VLPs) are multiprotein structures that mimic the organization and conformation of authentic native viruses but lack the viral genome. They have been applied not only as prophylactic and therapeutic vaccines but also as vehicles in drug and gene delivery and, more recently, as tools in nanobiotechnology. In this article, basic and advanced features of viruses and VLPs are presented and their major applications are discussed. The different production platforms based on animal cell technology are explained, and their main challenges and future perspectives are explored. The implications of large-scale production of viruses and VLPs are discussed in the context of process control, monitorization, and optimization. The main upstream and downstream technical challenges are identified and discussed accordingly.
Original languageUnknown
Title of host publicationComprehensive Biotechnology
EditorsMoo-Young Murray
Place of PublicationBurlington
PublisherAcademic Press
ISBN (Print)978-0-08-088504-9
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2011

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