This week's HIV/AIDS theme issue of JAMA features an artistic rendering of the retrovirus HIV. At first glance, the fanciful pastel tints may belie its malevolence, but the barely apparent capsid in the interior provides a hint of the menace lurking within. The fiery background is referential to the wildfire-like spread of the virus across the landscape of the globe. Of note, the image is not intended to represent a scientific schematic of the virus, but rather to provide an impressionistic sense of the viral particle that has changed the course of human history.
Smith JM. Retrovirus. JAMA. 2012;308(4):320. doi:10.1001/jama.2012.3660