Scientists are waking up a 30,000-year-old ‘giant’ virus

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Bringing a 30,000-year-old virus back to life sounds like the plot of a real-life horror movie. So if you were scared by the incurable virus in the movie “28 Days Later,” you might want to stop reading right now.

Scientists who discovered a prehistoric virus called Mollivirus sibericum in the Siberian permafrost plan to give the virus its first wakeup call since the last Ice Age (after first verifying that it can’t harm humans and animals, thankfully). It’s hoped the study could shed insight into ancient dormant viruses that could, it’s feared, get another chance at spreading as permafrost retreats due to climate change.

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1 thought on “Scientists are waking up a 30,000-year-old ‘giant’ virus”

  1. Are viruses a life form as we know it?
    It sounds to me that viruses are life.
    If these little demons are life then they are the oldest living thing on the planet. The virus must be capable of hibernation. To live thousands of years in hibernation?
    As such we need to study them for weaknesses we can exploit.
    How fast do they reproduce in lab conditions?
    Do they have immunity to sunlight?
    There is a reason why the virus did not survive in the open in other areas.
    It is possible this hardy little creature on a microscopic scale is a hive creature. Meaning individuals form something much more intelligent together.
    Even a little creature like a virus must feed occasionally on something or completely shut down while frozen.
    What does it feed on?
    This is the kind of life I suspect we might find on Mars.
    And that is why we should not colonize the planet without knowing what awaits us.
    Our own moon is much closer. Yet I suspect life might even survive there if it is deep underground in caverns with water available.
    Would such viruses survive a vaccum?
    Or a 400 degree difference in temperature every two weeks?
    It is fairly certain the moon is sterile on the surface.
    Our own planet has caverns and some go quite deep under the surface.
    A virus could just possibly survive in deep underground caverns for a long time if there is an abundant supply of water and other life to feed upon. Taking the temperature of the soil at various depths could provide a temperature of 70 or more degrees the deeper you go.
    Gainesville has a minor example of this in a sinkhole that has been around for a long time. Plants in the sinkhole are not found anywhere else on the planet. They are basically enough underground to survive climate changes either over 100 degrees F. or way past freezing that occur on the surface.
    Could such isolated holes in the ground also keep large animals alive? I do not know.

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