Pithovirus sibericum

Scientists recently discovered a 30,000 year old virus in north-eastern Siberia, Russia. This virus has been shown to closely resemble the Pandoravirus, but the Pithovirus has significantly less genes (500), and only one or two proteins similar to the Pandoravirus. The Pithovirus also relies less on the ameba nucleus and more on its components in the cytoplasm. Although this virus infects only amebas, its discovery may hint to future public health risks as global warming melts the permafrost where we now know preserve such ancient, and harmful, viruses. Discoveries such as these remind us of the discoveries we are making in lab currently! Of the genes my group has identified, only a couple have remotely matched any known proteins. We have such a great opportunity in our hands to make significant scientific discoveries! Its so very exciting.

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