virus theory

Karl Roberts kr1 at PGSTUMAIL.PG.CC.MD.US
Wed Apr 15 17:46:05 EST 1998

Dear Fred and Rachel,
Your professor's idea is an interesting one indeed. I have often wondered
if viruses, viroids, and prions were in fact genetic "accidents", products
of random mutation of the genetic code of ancestral prokaryotic and
eukaryotic cells. If we can accept the concept of endosymbiosis, such as
proposed by Dr. Lynn Margulis, why is it far-fetched to hypothesize that
such infectious particles could have arisen in a reverse fashion, then
began the processes of adapting to and evolving with their eventual
hosts? Good question.
Karl J. Roberts, Ph.D.
Maryland, USA

 On Wed, 15 Apr 1998, Fred & Rachel Brusseau wrote:

> Food for thought.....
> Yesterday in my Developmental Biology class my professor proposed an
> interesting theory. He thinks that human virus' are derived from humans.
> They are bits of our DNA that have somehow disassociated from our body
> and evolved into what they are today. I can't remember the details of
> his example, but he said the theory came to him when he read about a
> virus that had complete homology (with exception of one base pair) with
> a portion of human DNA. I think it is a radical, but interesting idea.
> I'm in awe while trying to comprehend the mechanism and implications.
> When I first heard him talking about it I wanted to laugh, but then I
> thought a reoccurring theme in science. Some of the best ideas have been
> tossed aside as "hogwash", only later to be proven true!
> Any comments?
> Rachel Brusseau

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