11 December 2019
Vol 11, Issue 522

About The Cover

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ONLINE COVER Conducive Chimeras. Insect-transmitted flaviviruses cause diseases, such as hemorrhagic dengue fever and congenital Zika syndrome. Shown here is a pseudocolored electron micrograph of a new viral platform that may aid in the development of flavivirus diagnostics or vaccines. Hobson-Peters et al. discovered Binjari virus, a flavivirus that only replicates in insect cells and tolerates exchange of structural proteins from other flaviviruses to form chimeric viruses. Such chimeric viruses can express antigens important for human pathogens, but do not replicate in mammalian cells, and can safely be used to make antigens for diagnostic assays or vaccines. The Binjari virus platform may help to overcome current hurdles in flavivirus prevention and detection. [CREDIT: D. WATTERSON/THE UNIVERSITY OF QUEENSLAND]