Do big viruses make you really sick?
For most of my research career, I worked on viruses with small genomes, such as poliovirus and HIV. For me, the attraction of these viruses is that it is easier to understand all the interactions that go on within a small genome than with an unfeasibly large genome such as that of a cell. However, in the past few years I have become fascinated with a group of viruses that are not only considerably bigger than the little guys I worked on, but indeed the biggest of all known viruses. It has to be said that virologists are possibly not the most imaginitive people when it comes to names, so we called them all Giruses – giant viruses.