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Virus Snowflakes

The beautiful symmetry of snowflakes, when viewed under the microscope, inspired traditional paper snowflake decorations.
A really good microscope will show you that viruses are beautiful too, and also that they are (often) symmetrical.
This booklet contains designs for five decorative paper snowflakes - or are they?  Look at them carefully enough and you will find that they are packed with virology details.

Download yours - Virus Snowflakes 2020

Bioinformatics with Bricks - SARS-CoV-2 Lego

Have a go at performing a reference sequence assembly like our bioinformaticians for SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19. 

Sars-CoV-2 image

You can watch our demo video by clicking here


Simply download and print the templates below to have a go!

SARS-CoV-2 Lego Instructions

SARS-CoV-2 Genetic Code

SARS-CoV-2 Reference Assembly Sheet


(Credit to Sejal Modha and Richard Orton for designing this activity)

Visible Viruses

Image of student Rachel Suett holding a tablet, image of tablet with an augmented reality virus and image of a poster with an image of a 3D virus on an android phone.

How do you learn more about something that's too small to see?

For researchers at the CVR it’s what we do for a living (and it’s a great job), but outside of a research lab it can be hard to get a clear view of the invisibly small viruses that surround us. Fortunately, we now have an app for that.
Students at the Glasgow School of Art have been collaborating with Ed Hutchinson and Connor Bamford at the CVR, to help you learn more about viruses using your phone or tablet, some posters, and the power of augmented reality (AR).
The app, which is aimed particularly at secondary school pupils, is a multimedia educational tool, which combines posters and an app to explore key features of three viruses.

FREE to download

The app and posters can be downloaded HERE. 


These educational materials are freely available under a creative commons license (CC-BY-NC-ND 4.0). The app should run on any Android phone or tablet with OS 5.0 (Lollipop) or later, though you may need to adjust your settings to allow content from unknown sources (this can be reverted after installing the app if you wish). This app is being developed as part of a student project and is still undergoing testing; it should run without issue on suitable devices but it is supplied as is and we cannot be held liable for any issues arising from its use.

Virus Structure Templates

Why not try out making our virus models and use them to create a mobile?  

 Image of virus structure mobile

Simply download and print out our templates below:

Dengue virus

Human Rhinovirus

Tobacco Mosaic Virus

Art Goes Viral

Image of a section of the front cover of the CVR colouring book.

At the MRC-University of Glasgow Centre for Virus Research (CVR) we know that, like viruses, creativity is contagious. To help spread the fun, we have designed our very own colouring book! Illustrated and written by CVR scientists, we hope this book gives you a bit of welcome relief from the daily stresses of life, while inspiring you with interesting facts about viruses and the incredible research underway at our centre in Glasgow.

Created with the support of the Medical Research Council, we hope you enjoy learning about the tiny pathogens that never cease to amaze us.

You can download a FREE copy of the book 
(Troubleshooting: If having difficulties please try this link: CVR Colouring Book Web Version (if you have a problem downloading, please try using Google Chrome)

Why not choose your favourite picture and add a flourish of colour.  Then take a picture of your coloured image and tweet it back to us @CVRInfo.  We'd also like to hear about the most interesting fact you've learned from the book!

You can now even download the pages individually by clicking here!

Remember to use #CVaRt #ArtGoesViral
Go forth, be bold and colour!
Happy colouring - the CVaRt team.
P.S 'Creativity is contagious - pass it on' - Albert Einstein


Fight the Pandemic Board Game

Follow SARS-CoV-2 as it spreads throughout the world causing a global pandemic. 

This boardgame is an educational resource for children to highlight good hygiene practice and behaviour. 

Image of the pandemic board game 

You can download the boardgame for FREE here:

Fight the Pandemic Board Game

Vaccines & the Immune System

Vaccines don't save lives, vaccination does. It is important that people have a good understanding of why they are being advised to vaccinate.

By watching this video, we hope that viewers have an enhanced understanding of how the immune system works, the importance of immune memory and how vaccines protect again infectious diseases. We aim to empower people to make informed decisions about whether to vaccinate themselves or their children.


This video was created by student Lois Mason who teamed up with Dr Georgia Perona-Wright (from UofG III) to write a blog answering common questions about vacccines and the immune system which you can read here.