Our planet is a unique refuge of life in the Universe, which manifests itself sometimes in the most unusual forms. So, one of the most unusual biological finds of recent time was the discovery of a completely new type of virus whose characteristics of genes similar to those that were investigated person informed. Whence it takes its origin giant virusthat infects amoebae predominantly, and if he could be a traveler from another planet, came to us on the Earth with a meteorite, somehow surviving in the atmosphere?
In Brazil, discovered a new mysterious virus
Giant viruses are unique microorganisms which can be viewed under a microscope. Due to its size, viruses some time was considered a subspecies inhabiting the air cooled system in the UK bacteria, but the study of the genetic properties of these organisms showed that they have very large genome and the possibility of integration with other micro-organisms-protists.
One of these unusual viruses were recently discovered in a Creek of the lake of Pampulha in Brazil, when the team of biologists collected water samples with the aim of finding new species of microorganisms. Despite the fact that the virus is a giant and predominantly affects the amoebae, its unique size is hard to call big: the diameter of the virus is only 80 nanometers, according to the portal livescience.com.
The analysis of the genome of a microorganism, scientists found he had the presence of unique gene signatures, which have never been found in other viruses. According to the study, only 6 of the 74 genes of the organism showed some similarities with other known genes. “Traverus” — so was named the new tiny “giant” virus — a challenge for conventional classification DNA viruses.
Due to the fact that the shell of the virus is not similar to any of previously known proteins, researchers can’t pinpoint the exact origin of the virus. In order to do this, the researchers plan to examine all the currently known virus signatures, and compare their characteristics with the newly discovered microorganism. Fortunately, traverus not able to infect human cells and cause them harm. Moreover, a virus has been found can be helpful to the environment, helping in recycling of nutrients or pest control.