In normal cells, nucleic acids make up the all the genetic material found in the nuclei. Bundles of nucleic acids are collectively called genes, and they sting together to for chromosomes. There are a total of 46 chromosomes in every normal human cell nucleus. The smaller packets of nucleic acids make it possible for normal cells to manufacture proteins, enzymes, energy and heat. They also allow cells to carry out the everyday functions of life and pass on their characteristic to their offspring. If we take the time to inspect these nucleic acids more closely, we would see that they are specialized molecules known as DNA (deoxyribonucleic acid) and RNA (ribonucleic acid). These molecules are the basic building blocks of all life and act as the master plans for all the cells in a body.
While DNA can be considered the director of operations, RNA specializes in carrying 'messages' from the nucleus to different parts of the cell. DNA is made up of many separate fragments that each contains different coded messages. In a process called transcription, a rough copy of the DNA's gene is decoded and written onto a strand of RNA. The result is a form of messenger RNA, which travels to each part of the cell carrying specific instructions and commands. This process is vital for the survival of cells in a body, and if something hampers its completion or alters the instructions, the results can be deadly.
Viruses are tiny packages of genetic material without a living cell enveloping them. The key to their power is the nucleic acid they possess. When a virus attacks and infects a vulnerable living cell, it pours its own DNA and/or RNA inside. Once inside, the hereditary material begins a virtual Coup d'état. It attaches itself to the cell's existing DNA and sets up a new command system. Now, instead of producing substances the cell needs to survive, it is forced to produce viral nucleic acid. One cell can be used to create thousands of new, mature viruses. The fastest virus only needs 24 minutes to explode a cell and release new virus particles. Cells are damaged and destroyed with each new birth, and chaos is all that is left in the wake.