Notes on Family: Arenaviridae

enveloped pleomorphic
enveloped pleomorphic


General Description

This family contains a single genus of viruses that have pleomorphic, enveloped, particles with club-shaped projections and have a bipartite ambisense RNA genome.


Virions pleomorphic, enveloped, 50-300 nm in diameter, with club-shaped (8-10 nm) projections. Host ribosomes are usually present with the particles.


Bipartite single-stranded negative sense RNA totalling about 11 kb. There is no genome-linked protein (VPg) at the 5'-terminus nor a 3'-polyA tail. Both RNAs have an ambisense coding strategy with single genes in each sense.

Genera in the Family

There is currently only one genus: