The page below is a sample from the LabCE course HIV: Structure, Replication, and Detection. Access the complete course and earn ASCLS P.A.C.E.-approved continuing education credits by subscribing online.

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HIV Capsid

Initially, the capsid is shaped like an icosahedron. The small blue circles in the image on the right represent the capsomere subunits that cover the entire capsid. Later on, this icosahedral-shaped capsid will restructure itself into a shape resembling a bullet.