Enveloped viruses infect cells by a mechanism involving membrane fusion. This process is mediated and triggered by specific viral membrane glycoproteins. Evidence is accumulating that fusion of intracellular membranes, as occurs during endocytosis and transport between intracellular organelles, also requires the presence of specific proteins. The relevance of elucidating the mechanisms of virus fusion for a better understanding of fusion of intracellular membranes is discussed.

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