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Alu sequences and human evolution

FOSTERCMD fostercmd at aol.com
Tue Jul 19 21:04:05 EST 1994


In article <30fhlj$7vf at search01.news.aol.com>, fostercmd at aol.com
(FOSTERCMD) writes:

Subj:	Re: Alu sequences and human e...
Date:	94-07-19 21:58:08 EDT
From:	FOSTERCMD
To:	drierac at deakin.edu.au

Thank you Chris for your informative response.  I was just performing
a Medline search on Alu sequences  when your e-mail arrived.
The field is quite fascinating and full of perplexing questions.
It has been determined that a distinctly human subfamily of Alu sequences
exist  and their appearance shows evidence of punctuation rather than
gradual mutation and natural selection.   Could it be possible that their
origins or via prehistoric
retroviruses that invaded germ line cells in apes to create man? It
is true that there is some sequence similarity of some Alu family
members with the 7sRNA and it is also true that some alu sequences are
transcribed, appear in the cytoplasm, and  have specific binding proteins.
 Yet the same can be said about the similarity of retroviral LTVs with alu
sequences and the similarity  "retro-transposition"  with  retroviral
integration.  
     For the moment I will refrain from my beliefs concerning the
comet origin of some viruses and stick with evaluating the postulate
that punctuations in evolution are partly mediated by viral integration
into prior species resulting in the creation of new species.  These
prehistoric viruses may be the HERVs that can be seen in the genome. Do
you know of anybody else who is studying these possibilites?  What is a
good review  on HERVs?

thanks again,  Foster Carr MD



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