> From: fostercmd at aol.com (FOSTERCMD)
> retroviruses. Is this correct? I am building a theory of
> postulates that viral integration
> into germ lines has played a significant role during the
> periods in the
> evolutionary history of life on earth.
OK so far...
>It is my belief that specific
> types of viruses
> originate from beyond earth, arrive via comet vectors and their
> debris, rain on
> earth and cause episodic jumps in the evolution of life.
Now we're into the snake chasing! One does not NEED to postulate an
extraterrestrial origin for viruses; there are more than enough
possible sources right here without having to postulate more.
You've also been listening far too much to Fred Hoyle, and not
enough to Carl Sagan.
>Does anybody have
> or thoughts to share?
Yes: stick to the theory without the moonshine. There is more than
enough like speculation around to bolster your argument.
>Have there been any PCR studies on these types
> meteorites inorder to search for viruses (DNA or RNA).
Now really: PCR for WHAT? It is hard enough to do PCR for things we
know about, without asking people to do PCR on lumps of blackened
material from outer space, which MOST probably does not contain any
XNA similar to anything we have sequenced.
? Has anybody
> developed a reasonable phylogenetic tree for viruses? or
> viruses into
> the grand scheme of the origin of life?
Several people have - and they have multiple origins, depending on
what they are (RNA or DNA, ds or ss). I suggest you look at Eugene
Koonin's latest (large) review in CRC Press (not got ref offhand,
use online search to find).
> I haven't read any of his ideas on the existence of viruses or
> of life on
> comets. Can somebody tell me what his ideas are?
You are coming up with a theory of the extraterrestrial origin of
viruses without having read the master of the game? Tut, tut!
Forget that it is all horsepucky; you really have no business
launching out into this sort of thing without a thorough literature
survey - in which case you wouldn't be asking these questions! Read
first, formulate theory later....
| Ed Rybicki, PhD | Well, I tip my hat |
| (ed at micro.uct.ac.za) | To the new constitution |
| Dept Microbiology | Take a bow for the new revolution... |
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