New research published in the journal “Scientific Reports” raises worries about the possible reactivation of a virus that has lain dormant in the permafrost for the past 48,500 years. Pithovirus sibericum infects amoebas, but its potential to infect people if it were to become active again has been called into question.
A zombie virus reviving after thousands of years may sound like something out of a horror film, but the resuscitation of long-dormant viruses is not unprecedented. A growing number of ancient viruses and bacteria are being exposed when permafrost in the Arctic and other cold locations melts as a result of climate change.
It’s worth noting, though, that the resurgence of long-dormant viruses doesn’t always pose an immediate danger to human health. As far as anyone knows, Pithovirus sibericum cannot infect humans, and there is no evidence to suggest that it can. The virus only infects amoebas, and it’s quite improbable that it would cause serious harm to humans even if it did.
Even if Pithovirus sibericum were to become active again, it would be difficult for it to infect humans because viruses require a host to survive and replicate. There is no proof that Pithovirus sibericum can transfer from person to person, which is a necessary characteristic of any virus that could be dangerous to human health.
In conclusion, while it is concerning that long-dormant viruses are being resurrected, it is also vital to keep in mind that not all viruses are harmful to humans. Even if Pithovirus sibericum were to become active again, there is little evidence to suggest that it could infect humans or constitute a serious threat to human health. There’s no reason to freak out about the reactivation of this virus, however, we should keep an eye on things and take precautions in case it spreads.
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