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A virus is a small infectious organism transmitted through either sexual contact, inhalation, swallowing or insect bites, according to the Merck Manual. The most common way in which viruses spread is by throat, airway and nasal passage infection.


Scientists rely on characteristics such as size, number of strands, shape and nucleic acid type to identify viruses, Washington State University explains. Other attributes used to identify these microorganisms include number of nucleic acid pieces and serological characteristics of the capsid protei


Common disease-carrying viruses include venereal viruses, cold viruses and blood-borne pathogens that trigger hepatitis. Genital herpes, which is caused the herpes simplex virus, is contagious in nature, notes the United States National Institutes of Health.


There is no direct figure as to how many computer viruses there are because new viruses emerge almost every day. However, in 2008, there were more than 1 million computer viruses. According to zdnet.com, in 2012, the Symantec virus definition file contained over 17 million separate signatures.


To identify a computer virus, use Windows Defender, the built-in protection software in Windows Vista and newer versions, and perform a quick, full or custom scan. Once the scanning process completes, let the program remove the virus automatically, or remove it manually. If Windows Defender cannot i


Viruses are generally not regarded as living organisms as they lack the cellular machinery required to survive on their own. This distinction is somewhat tenuous as viruses carry their own unique genetic material and are capable of evolving, but the commonly accepted definition of "life" requires th


Some common viruses found in humans are coronaviruses, enteroviruses and RSV, notes the Maine Center for Disease Control & Prevention. Other common viruses are rhinoviruses, human parainfluenza viruses and rotaviruses. Viruses are found all around the world and cannot be killed by antibiotics. They


Like viruses in humans or animals, computer viruses work by spreading themselves, by attaching themselves to an innocuous program or computer process and replicating with the spread of information between computers. Average computer users see viruses spread through websites or email.


New viruses, worms and Trojan horse programs are identified daily. As of October 2014, McAfee and Bitdefender are two companies, of many, that maintain online virus databases. Three of McAfee's top-tracked viruses originated in 2008, 2009 and 2010. Its website has detailed, up-to-date information on


Some of the most dangerous types of viruses include Ebola, influenza and HIV. While doctors have developed treatments and preventive measures against them, these viruses are still highly contagious and often lethal to those who become infected.