Ancient virus defends koalas against new viral attacks

The human genome is riddled with endogenous retroviruses—little pieces of degraded and generally harmless retrovirus DNA passed down through the generations, along with our own genetic information. Because most endogenous ...

HIV's ancestors 'plagued first mammals'

(PhysOrg.com) -- The retroviruses which gave rise to HIV have been battling it out with mammal immune systems since mammals first evolved around 100 million years ago - about 85 million years earlier than previously thought, ...

New inherited retroviruses identified in the koala genome

Historic virus infections can be traced in vertebrate genomes. For millions of years, these genomes have been repositories for retroviruses that incorporated their code into germline cells and were inherited as endogenous ...

Koalas exposed to double-whammy health threat

An AIDS-like virus plaguing Australia's koala population is leaving them more vulnerable to chlamydia and other threatening health conditions, University of Queensland research has found.

Retroviruses are re-writing the koala genome and causing cancer

The koala retrovirus (KoRV) is a virus which, like other retroviruses such as HIV, inserts itself into the DNA of an infected cell. At some point in the past 50,000 years, KoRV has infected the egg or sperm cells of koalas, ...

Viruses play critical role in evolution and survival of the species

As the world scrambles to control the growing COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic, new research in Nature Structural & Molecular Biology shows viruses also play a key evolutionary role in mammals' ability to reproduce and survive.

The making of 'Fancy Mouse'

For the past few hundred years, the colorful hair and unique patterns of the so-called "Fancy Mouse" have made them the stars of pet shows in Japan and beyond. Now, scientists have finally revealed the true cause of the genetic ...

Retroviruses 'almost half a billion years old'

Retroviruses - the family of viruses that includes HIV - are almost half a billion years old, according to new research by scientists at Oxford University. That's several hundred million years older than previously thought ...

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