One origin? (viral evolution)

Thomas Lammers lammers at VAXA.CIS.UWOSH.EDU
Fri Jul 20 12:03:23 CDT 2001

At 12:40 PM 7/20/01 -0400, you wrote:

>As I am a theorist here, can it be that in this thread we have come to a
>sacred cow. That is, to acknowledge that viruses are living yet so unlike
>other life is to acknowledge more than one tree, root, seed for life here?
>Which would open Pandora's box to other more drastic idiomatic quakes.

It would seem that nucleic acids and their whole replication business stems
from a single origin, so in that sense, all life (sensu stricto) has one
origin.  And it seems that the cell has but one origin.  I guess the
question rests on the relationship between the two, i.e., do viruses
predate the cell or vive versa?

Thomas G. Lammers, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor and Curator of the Herbarium (OSH)
Department of Biology and Microbiology
University of Wisconsin Oshkosh
Oshkosh, Wisconsin 54901-8640 USA

e-mail:       lammers at
phone:      920-424-1002
fax:           920-424-1101

Plant systematics; classification, nomenclature, evolution, and
biogeography of the Campanulaceae s. lat.

"Today's mighty oak is yesterday's nut that stood his ground."
                                                 -- Anonymous

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