purpose of viruses??

Patrick O'Neil patrick at corona
Wed Feb 22 21:14:21 EST 1995



On Sat, 28 Jan 1995, Rob Jordan wrote:

>  The aggressiveness can be really very high, Ebola Zaire 
> > for example kills 9 out of 10 human hosts in <14 days.  I'd speculated that, 
> > for the virus, this is not too good an idea as if you want to spread your 
> > genetic material if your are too pathogenic then you eventually loose your 
> > host.  Whereas AIDS although equally agressive allows the host to live thus 
> > allowing its (somewhat rapid) propagation.
> > 
> True, probably the most successful virus would be one that could replicate
> without causing any pathogenesis. Who knows perhaps we are infected with
> many more viruses than we know.

This is not necessarily the case.  It depends more on the mode of
transmission rather than the effects of infection.  If a virus can be
efficiently transfered by an insect, for instance, that can get to hosts
whether they are laid up or even dead, then the virus could get away with
killing you almost as fast as it "desires." 

Patrick O'Neil



More information about the Virology mailing list