Is the image of a T4 Bacteriophage (a virus) circulating on the internet real?

A picture claiming to be a real image of a T4 Bacteriophage is being widely circulated on social media.

By Sunanda Naik  Published on  23 Jan 2023 6:23 AM GMT
Is the image of a T4 Bacteriophage (a virus) circulating on the internet real?

Hyderabad: Have you ever wondered what a virus looks like?
Here is a picture claiming to be a real image of a T4 Bacteriophage.

According to one study, Bacteriophage T4 is the best-studied member of Myoviridae, the most complex family of tailed phages. T4 assembly is divided into three independent pathways: the head,the tail, and the long tail fibres.
Fact Check
Newsmeter found the claim to be false.
According to PNAS (Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States ofAmerica), the virus bacteriophage T4 infects the bacterium Escherichia coli using an intriguing nanoscale injection machinery that employs a contractile tail. The injection machinery recognises and punctures the bacterial host and transfers the viral genome into the host during infection.
The actual structure of the virus looks similar to the one that has gone viral on the internet. However, the viral image is a 3D design. The image has been snapped out of a YouTube video titled 'XVIVO Scientific Animation Demo
Video', published on October 23, 2009. It can be seen at a time stamp of 0.29 seconds.
The video description reads: 'Every day, scientists are discovering and inventing things that no human has ever seen before. Our mission is dedicated to making these discoveries visible, understandable, and compelling.
XVIVO's award-winning animation studio creates compelling visual productions for pharmaceuticals, medical devices, biotech companies, advertising agencies, educational organisations, museums, and broadcast companies. From script to screen, we provide custom education and communication services for every client; the description reads.



With the following evidence, it is clear that the viral image is not an actual image of the T4 bacteriophage but a 3D rendering.

Claim Review:A picture claiming to be a real image of a T4 Bacteriophage.
Claimed By:Social media user
Claim Reviewed By:NewsMeter
Claim Source:Facebook
Claim Fact Check:False
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