by Stephanie Pappas, Live Science Contributor | September 15, 2015 11:06am ET
|The new virus, called Mollivirus sibericum, was found in Siberian permafrost.|
Credit: © IGS CNRS/AMU
It's 30,000 years old and still ticking: A giant virus recently discovered deep in the Siberian permafrost reveals that huge ancient viruses are much more diverse than scientists had ever known.
They're also potentially infectious if thawed from their Siberian deep freeze, though they pose no danger to humans, said Chantal Abergel, a scientist at the National Center for Scientific Research at Aix-Marseille University in France and co-author of a new study announcing the discovery of the new virus. As the globe warms and the region thaws, mining and drilling will likely penetrate previously inaccessible areas, Abergel said./.../