15,000-Year-Old Viruses Discovered in Tibetan Glacier Ice -

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Astronuc
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Previously Unknown to Humans - sure, because it's 2021, and pandemic in 2020-2021 wasn't enough.
https://scitechdaily.com/15000-year...tan-glacier-ice-previously-unknown-to-humans/

I've hear similar concern about other regions and the permafrost, which is melting in some areas.

Scientists who study glacier ice have found viruses nearly 15,000 years old in two ice samples taken from the Tibetan Plateau in China. Most of those viruses, which survived because they had remained frozen, are unlike any viruses that have been cataloged to date.

The findings, published on July 20, 2021, in the journal Microbiome, could help scientists understand how viruses have evolved over centuries. For this study, the scientists also created a new, ultra-clean method of analyzing microbes and viruses in ice without contaminating it.

“These glaciers were formed gradually, and along with dust and gases, many, many viruses were also deposited in that ice,” said Zhi-Ping Zhong, lead author of the study and a researcher at The Ohio State University Byrd Polar and Climate Research Center who also focuses on microbiology. “The glaciers in western China are not well-studied, and our goal is to use this information to reflect past environments. And viruses are a part of those environments.”

When they analyzed the ice, they found genetic codes for 33 viruses. Four of those viruses have already been identified by the scientific community. But at least 28 of them are novel. About half of them seemed to have survived at the time they were frozen not in spite of the ice, but because of it.

Researchers determined that the ice was nearly 15,000 years old using a combination of traditional and new, novel techniques to date this ice core.

https://microbiomejournal.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/s40168-021-01106-w
 
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DaveC426913
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22 years ago, Greg Bear's Darwin's Radio hit the bookstands.
Viruses inhabiting glacier-entombed Early Humans are exposed by climate change.
(Bad News for a lot of people, but for some, it is a springboard to a new stage in evolution.)
A great book.
 
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Evo
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So these viruses existed in recent human history. Do they have a way to see if humans have some immunity to them, if they are viruses that even pose a threat to humans?
 
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Ygggdrasil
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So these viruses existed in recent human history. Do they have a way to see if humans have some immunity to them, if they are viruses that even pose a threat to humans?

The paper concludes that "Glacier ice viruses are predicted to infect dominant glacier ice microbes," meaning that most are likely bacteriophages that infect bacteria and not anything that would infect humans (though their methods can only detect dsDNA viruses).
 
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SimplePrimate
The paper concludes that "Glacier ice viruses are predicted to infect dominant glacier ice microbes," meaning that most are likely bacteriophages that infect bacteria and not anything that would infect humans (though their methods can only detect dsDNA viruses).

Any widespread changes inflicted upon the global microbiome might well have some interesting consequences to humanity, I'd guess.

For example airborne bacteria are thought to play a key role as cloud condensation nuclei. Phytoplankton are pretty nice to have around too.
 

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