Author Topic: Confirmation of Seth's ideas on viruses  (Read 176 times)

Offline Sena

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There is an article in National Geographic, published in 2014, which seems to mesh with Seth's views on viruses.

This is the Seth quote:

"Give us a moment . . . What I have said about viruses applies
to all biological life. Viruses are "highly intelligent" — meaning that they
react quickly to stimuli. They are responsive to emotional states. They are
social. Their scale of life varies considerably, and some can be inactive
for centuries, and revive. They have extensive memory patterns,
biologically imprinted. Some can multiply in the tens of thousands within
seconds. They are in many ways the basis of biological life, but you are
aware of them only when they show "a deadly face." (NOME)

This is the scientific article:

"Chantal Abergel and Jean-Michel Claverie were used to finding strange viruses.

The married virologists at Aix-Marseille University had made a career of it. But pithovirus, which they discovered in 2013 in a sample of Siberian dirt that had been frozen for more than 30,000 years, was more bizarre than the pair had ever imagined a virus could be.

In the world of microbes, viruses are small—notoriously small. Pithovirus is not. The largest virus ever discovered, pithovirus is more massive than even some bacteria. Most viruses copy themselves by hijacking their host's molecular machinery. But pithovirus is much more independent, possessing some replication machinery of its own.

Scientists have traditionally thought that viruses were relative latecomers to the evolutionary stage, emerging after the appearance of cells.

"They rely on cellular machinery to help with their replication, so they need to have some sort of primitive cell to make use of that machinery," said Jack Szostak, a biochemist at Harvard University and a Nobel laureate. In other words, viruses mooch off cells, so without cells, viruses can't exist.

But some scientists say the discovery of giant viruses could turn that view of life on its head. They propose that the ancestors of modern viruses, far from being evolutionary laggards, might have provided the raw material for the development of cellular life and helped drive its diversification into the varied organisms that fill every corner of the planet.

Supporters point to a few lines of evidence. First, the diversity of viruses far exceeds that found in cellular life.

"Where diversity lies, origin lies," said Valerian Dolja, a virologist and plant cell biologist at Oregon State University who collaborates with Koonin.

According to this perspective, if viruses developed from cells, they should be less diverse because cells would contain the entire range of genes available to viruses. It's a recurring theme in evolutionary biology: One of the reasons we know humans originated in Africa is that genetic diversity among residents of that continent is much greater than it is anywhere else. If this pattern of diversity is true for humans, Dolja said, there's no reason it can't also be true for viruses.

Viruses are also more diverse when it comes to reproduction. "Cells only have two main ways of replicating their DNA," said Patrick Forterre, a virologist at Paris-Sud University. "One is found in bacteria, the other in Archaea and eukaryotes." Viruses, on the other hand, have many more methods at their disposal, he said.

Forterre suggests that viruses evolved after primitive cells but before modern cells. Some of the viruses that infect the three different domains of life share several of the same proteins, suggesting that they may have evolved before life diverged into these three branches."

There is another article here on "an infinity of viruses":

"If you get sick with the flu, for example, every infected cell in your airway produces about 10,000 new viruses. The total number of flu viruses in your body can rise to 100 trillion within a few days. That’s over 10,000 times more viruses than people on Earth.

If there can be so many viruses in a single person, how many viruses are there in total on our planet? I’ve hunted around for a number, and the one I’ve seen most often is 10311031. As in, 10000000000000000000000000000000. As in over 10 million times more viruses than there are stars in the universe. "
« Last Edit: January 18, 2021, 03:03:23 AM by Sena »
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