Top 10 discoveries in virus research in 2022
The influence of pathogens dates back before and after the beginning of human history, and in fact, viruses have played a major role in shaping the trajectory of all life on Earth.
In recent years, especially since the outbreak of the new crown epidemic, viruses have become a “regular guest” in the headlines. In a report on December 26, 2022, the American Fun Science website listed 10 major research findings in the field of viruses in 2022, showing people how viruses affect humans and other organisms around the world.
‘Zombie’ virus revives in Siberian permafrost
Scientists have recently isolated some never-before-seen viruses from Siberian permafrost and rivers. The team resurrected the viruses and determined that some of them, despite being 48,000 years old, could still infect amoebae.
Although these new viruses cannot infect humans, other viruses lurking in permafrost are now being revived by climate change and could theoretically infect humans, raising alarm bells for human health, the researchers said.
Kissing spreads ‘cold sore’ virus
Some researchers believe that the virus behind “cold sores,” herpes simplex type 1 (HSV-1), may have been circulating as early as 5,200 years ago, possibly because of the growing popularity of kissing as a custom.
”Cold sore” viruses existed as early as the Bronze Age, while mass migrations of people from Eurasia to Europe, with kissing along the way, may have fueled the spread of the modern version of HSV-1, the study says Rise.
virus named after a norse god
Scientists have discovered the genetic remnants of a mysterious group of viruses that infect ancient Asgaria archaea. The scientists named the viruses after characters from Norse mythology and believe they may have influenced the rise of complex life on Earth, in part because they provided a precursor to the nucleus that now carries DNA in complex cells .
Epstein-Barr virus found to cause multiple sclerosis
Scientists at Harvard University in the United States published a paper in the journal Science, stating that their research shows that the virus that causes infectious mononucleosis, the “Epstein-Barr” (EB) virus, may contribute to multiple sclerosis (MS). MS), an autoimmune disease that affects the brain and spinal cord. The latest findings provide convincing data that EB is a trigger for the development of MS.
Giant virus found in Arctic lake
Scientists have discovered a giant virus in Lake Epischeff near Milne Fjord in the Canadian Arctic. Preliminary research shows that this giant virus relies on cyanobacteria in the lake to reproduce. It is larger than some bacteria and contains quite complex DNA. It is not clear whether it can infect other organisms.
Scientists are still discovering new variants of the giant virus, learning how their genes work and how they infect cells. Related research was published in the journal Applied and Environmental Microbiology.
Fight poison with fire! Phage kills drug-resistant bacteria
In May 2022, scientists from Harvard Medical School published a research paper in the journal Nature Communications, stating that their research shows that by combining antibiotics and surgery, phage therapy has been shown to be effective in treating multidrug-resistant bacteria in immunocompromised patients chelonian infection, this is the first report of phage therapy successfully treating M. chelonian infection.
The findings suggest that phages may be a promising treatment for multidrug-resistant infections, and further research is needed to gain a better understanding of the human immune response and the safety of phage therapy.
Ancient virus embedded in human genome
The research team of Tufts University in the United States stated that a number of studies have shown that 8% of the human genome is composed of ancient virus fragments. These ancient “remnants” are called “human endogenous retroviruses (HERV)”, It survived millions of years ago through the infection of human ancestors, and by virtue of its unparalleled ability to replicate, it became part of the human race.
HERV genes are active in diseased tissues such as tumors as well as in the development of human embryos, but how active are they in healthy tissues? Scientists are still unraveling related mysteries.
New virus found in the ocean
In April 2022, microbiologists from Ohio State University in the United States published a paper in the journal Science stating that they discovered more than 5,500 new RNA viruses in seawater samples collected from around the world and classified them into the number of phyla Increased from 5 to 10 types. This new trove of data on RNA viruses expands ecological research possibilities and reshapes understanding of how viruses evolve.
In addition, studies have shown that these RNA viruses infect a variety of hosts, including fungi, algae, amoebae, and even some invertebrates. Scientists say these mysterious virus-infected organisms can suck up atmospheric carbon dioxide, potentially affecting the flow of carbon throughout the oceans.
Tick carrying rare virus discovered
In March 2022, ticks carrying a rare virus called “Hartland” have been found in at least six U.S. states in March 2022, NBC reported. sickness and even death. Emory University scientist Proco Peck said: “‘Hartland’ is an emerging infectious disease that has not been fully understood, and we are trying to understand everything about the virus and defeat it.”
Climate change could spread ‘Japanese encephalitis’ to Australia
In March 2022, a large-scale “Japanese encephalitis” broke out in Australia, and four states in Australia had confirmed cases.
”Japanese encephalitis” generally refers to Japanese encephalitis, the causative agent of which was discovered in Japan in 1934. It is a potentially fatal disease that can cause severe neurological disorders, including headaches, convulsions, and loss of consciousness.
”Japanese encephalitis” is transmitted to humans through the bite of an infected mosquito of the genus Culex, usually affecting people in parts of Asia and the Western Pacific. But it will appear in many parts of Australia in 2022, and climate change may be the reason for the southward expansion of the disease.