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What's the link between the coronavirus and a salad dressing?

by Swen Helstroffer

How are components of the coronavirus similar to the phenomenon separating oil and vinegar in our salads? In this video, Swen Helstroffer details the physical phenomenon at work and explains how this process can be interesting for the discovery of agents against the coronavirus.


1) Cubuk, J., Alston, J.J., Incicco, J.J. et al. The SARS-CoV-2 nucleocapsid protein is dynamic, disordered, and phase separates with RNA. Nat Commun 12, 1936 (2021).

2) Choi JM, Holehouse AS, Pappu RV. Physical Principles Underlying the Complex Biology of Intracellular Phase Transitions. Annu Rev Biophys. 2020 May 6;49:107-133. doi: 10.1146/annurev-biophys-121219-081629. Epub 2020 Jan 31. PMID: 32004090.

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