(The AEGIS Alliance) – A group of international climate scientists has discovered that “zombie viruses” can infect amoeba cells when revived. The research, published in the open-access journal Viruses, examined over a dozen new viruses isolated from seven permafrost samples in Siberia. The study confirms previous research that found viruses, some tens of thousands of years old, can regain their infectiousness when revived.
According to the study and its authors from France, Russia, and Germany, the permafrost samples date back between 27,000 and 48,500 years. Permafrost is a frozen layer of soil found extensively on land and below the ocean floor, covering about one-quarter of the Northern Hemisphere.
Permafrost has been found to be an excellent preservative, but scientists are concerned that global warming and permafrost melting could cause viruses capable of infecting humans to emerge.
The researchers note that melting permafrost could lead to the mobilization of ancient organic matter preserved for millennia in deep permafrost layers. Siberia is particularly vulnerable to this phenomenon, where deep continuous permafrost underlies most of the North Eastern territories.
Additionally, permafrost melting could release organic matter that has been frozen for up to a million years, contributing to the greenhouse gas effect by releasing carbon dioxide and methane.
In summary, the research conducted by the international team of climate scientists confirms the threat of “zombie viruses” and the potential risks of permafrost melting.
Jeffrey Childers – The AEGIS Alliance – This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.