Vaccinia virus pulls together a makeshift tool to repair its DNA, exposing a vulnerability that could be targeted

The vaccinia virus uses its own machinery and not that of the cell it infects to repair ultraviolet radiation-caused damage to its DNA, according to new research. The virus repurposes an enzyme it uses for copying its DNA to repair the damage. Blocking that enzyme disrupts both the copying and repairing of viral DNA, resulting in a dramatic reduction in new virions.