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purpose of viruses??

Randall J. Cohrs COHRS-R at Oberon.HSC.Colorado.edu
Fri Jan 27 16:57:21 EST 1995

> To:            virology at net.bio.net
> From:          anh at macmailgw.dfci.harvard.edu (Anh Nguyen)
> Subject:       Re: purpose of viruses??
> Date:          Tue, 24 Jan 1995 07:40:20 -0500

> In article <D2vqt7.8Mv at world.std.com>, marq at world.std.com (Mark A Lilly) wrote:
> > I'm new here, and have read with interest the debates on the
> > origins of viruses, and the questions as to whether they are
> > alive or not.  My question is:  What are their purpose?
> > 
> > Is it to spread genetic material across the planet?  Is it to
> > achieve hegemony over the planet (seems they already do...)?
> I agree with you Mark. I would argue that the "purpose" of viruses, as
> with all living organisms,is to propagate their genetic material. Viruses
> are just a little more aggressive in their pursuit of this goal.
> Rob J.
> -- 
> Anh Nguyen
> anh_nguyen at macmailgw.dfci.harvard.edu

Amazingly enough the answer to "What is the purpose of viruses?" was 
given to me yesterday by a high-school student.

...  as litmus paper is used to determine if something is acidic or 
basic,  the purpose of viruses is to determine if something is alive 
or not ... 

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