New knowledge about retrovirus-host co-evolution

Retroviruses have colonised vertebrate hosts for millions of years by inserting their genes into host genomes, enabling their inheritance through generations as endogenous retroviruses (ERVs). Researchers from Uppsala University ...

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 ...

Viruses in the genome important for our brain

Over millions of years, retroviruses have been incorporated into human DNA, where they today make up almost 10 per cent of the total genome. A research group at Lund University in Sweden has now discovered a mechanism through ...

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 ...

Virus in bats homologous to retroviruses in rodents and primates

Scientists discovered a new retrovirus "fossil" found in the common vampire bat which is homologous to retroviruses in rodents and primates. The results suggest the recent circulation of an active infectious retrovirus and ...

Do viruses make us smarter?

A new study from Lund University in Sweden indicates that inherited viruses that are millions of years old play an important role in building up the complex networks that characterise the human brain.

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