Viruses: Viruses are the smallest of all the microbes. Viruses can live and multiply only inside host cells. A virus contains either DNA or RNA as genetic material and is surrounded by a protective coat called capsid made up of protein. Sometimes the capsid is surrounded by a spike coat called ‘envelope’. Viruses are capable of latching onto host cells and getting inside them.
How do viruses reproduce?: Viruses attach to the host cell, enter inside and use the host cell’s machinery to replicate its own genetic material. Once replication has been completed the virus particles leave the host by either budding or cell lysis.