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Scientists Wake Virus After 30,000 Year Slumber

Posted: March 18th, 2014 | Author: | Filed under: Favorite New Thought, From The Web | Tags: , , , , | Comments Off on Scientists Wake Virus After 30,000 Year Slumber

Scientists Wake Virus After 30,000 Year Slumber: Image via Matthieu LegendreFrench scientists say they have revived a giant but harmless virus that had been locked in the Siberian permafrost for more than 30,000 years.

Wakening the long-dormant virus serves as a warning that unknown pathogens entombed in frozen soil may be roused by global warming, the scientists said.

The virus, Pithovirus sibericum, was found in a 30-metre-deep sample of permanently frozen soil taken from coastal tundra in Chukotka, near the East Siberia Sea, where the average annual temperature is -13.4 degrees Celsius.

The team thawed the virus and watched it replicate in a culture in a petri dish, where it infected a simple single-cell organism called an amoeba.

Radiocarbon dating of the soil sample found that vegetation grew there more than 30,000 years ago, a time when mammoths and Neanderthals walked the Earth, according to a paper published in the US journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences :: Read the full article »»»»