Login

Join for Free!
118244 members


Gene-sharing possible between viruses, protozoa & bacteria?

Debate and discussion of any biological questions not pertaining to a particular topic.

Moderator: BioTeam

Gene-sharing possible between viruses, protozoa & bacteria?

Postby ijustwrite » Fri Jan 27, 2012 4:56 pm

Reading the special report written in Newsweek on the H1N1 virus a couple of years back, I get the impression that the virus evolved after taking bits and pieces of its DNA from a lot of sources - even from bacteria.

But then, is it possible for viruses to get DNA from bacteria, even from parasitic protozoa as well?
If so, how do they do it? :?:
Life is like having the best nose hair clippers
ijustwrite
Garter
Garter
 
Posts: 6
Joined: Fri Jan 27, 2012 4:48 pm

Postby canalon » Fri Jan 27, 2012 5:43 pm

I do not know about the report, but AFAIK H1N1 do not includes bits and pieces from other things than other flu viruses. However the flu viruses are well known for their ability to recombine and shuffle DNA with one another when they are co infecting an host. Wikipedia actually has some good basic explanation on the Influenza A virus ability to drift and recombine. Look along those keywords (for some reason my computer has problem acessing the links....
Patrick

Science has proof without any certainty. Creationists have certainty without
any proof. (Ashley Montague)
User avatar
canalon
Inland Taipan
Inland Taipan
 
Posts: 3909
Joined: Thu Feb 03, 2005 2:46 pm
Location: Canada

Re: Gene-sharing possible between viruses, protozoa & bacteria?

Postby ijustwrite » Sat Jan 28, 2012 4:30 am

So you're saying that viruses can share genes with fellow viruses, but not with bacteria and protozoa? :shock:

How about if a protozoa (say an amoeba) gets to ingest both a virus and a bacteria, would it be possible for genesharing to occur in that scenario? :?:

I read this news article in Discover magazine (April 2010, page 80) where an amoeba was discovered in England with a virus inside it. The article goes on stating that inside amoebas, "viruses and bacteria can swap genes" (quoting from the article). Unfortunately, it did not elaborate much on the details regarding this gene-swapping. From that, I thought that if viruses and bacteria can share genes, would it be possible for viruses to share genes with amoebas, or with other protozoans as well? :?:

Sorry if my question is quite complicated :oops: - I do hope there are geneticists who would chance on this thread. This really piqued my curiosity. I hope you guys can help me with this... :)
Life is like having the best nose hair clippers
ijustwrite
Garter
Garter
 
Posts: 6
Joined: Fri Jan 27, 2012 4:48 pm


Gene-sharing possible between viruses, protozoa & bacteria?

Postby ijustwrite » Sat Jan 28, 2012 4:47 am

Though I have posted this question before (post-139114.html#p139114), I hope you can bear with me on this one.

Since I read this article in Discover magazine (April 2010, page 80) - where an amoeba was discovered to have a virus inside, and the article further stating that "viruses and bacteria can swap genes" (quoting from that article) - it made me wonder: can viruses also get genes from a protozoa, as well as from bacteria and vice-versa?
Is that scenario possible? :?:
Life is like having the best nose hair clippers
ijustwrite
Garter
Garter
 
Posts: 6
Joined: Fri Jan 27, 2012 4:48 pm

Postby AstraSequi » Sun Jan 29, 2012 2:36 am

Definitely. :) One example of this is the rous sarcoma virus (RSV), which picked up a copy of the src gene. The discovery of this was a major milestone in our understanding of cancer, because the virus uses the (now mutated) gene to cause tumours.

One consideration, though, is that viruses are so small that they generally can't carry much additional genetic material - the genome is packed in very tightly. This would probably make transmission to a virus a rarer event, because to make space to fit in the new gene you will have to get rid of an old gene, and that might cause a problem.
AstraSequi
Coral
Coral
 
Posts: 102
Joined: Fri Jan 27, 2012 6:14 am

Re: Gene-sharing possible between viruses, protozoa & bacteria?

Postby ijustwrite » Sun Jan 29, 2012 12:59 pm

So let's just say inside a host, a Toxoplasmosa protozoa gets to live with the Rabies virus. In that setting, they can really get to swap genes? :shock:
By the way, when a parasitic protozoa exists with a virus inside a host when can that be considered as coinfection or superinfection? :?:
Life is like having the best nose hair clippers
ijustwrite
Garter
Garter
 
Posts: 6
Joined: Fri Jan 27, 2012 4:48 pm

Postby canalon » Sun Jan 29, 2012 4:56 pm

It is just that it is complicated.
Yes foreign DNA can be taken and passed from cell to cell by viruses (read about transduction), but not all viruses do that, and in general that kind of event is not very positive for the modified virus. And I was pointing out that in the case of the flu virus, there is little need for that because in the wild, co-infection are quite possible, and the virus do have then the ability to swap and exchange genes to create new hybrids that can be very infectious.
Patrick

Science has proof without any certainty. Creationists have certainty without
any proof. (Ashley Montague)
User avatar
canalon
Inland Taipan
Inland Taipan
 
Posts: 3909
Joined: Thu Feb 03, 2005 2:46 pm
Location: Canada

Postby canalon » Sun Jan 29, 2012 5:05 pm

[MODERATING NOTE]
Please do not post the same question in multiple sub-forum. It is not a good idea, and do not favour discussion and exchange of Idea. What you are reading here is the product of the merging of 2 threads. It is not nice to read as it is, so keep it nice and tidy on only thread in the future, thanks.
[/MODERATING NOTE]
Patrick

Science has proof without any certainty. Creationists have certainty without
any proof. (Ashley Montague)
User avatar
canalon
Inland Taipan
Inland Taipan
 
Posts: 3909
Joined: Thu Feb 03, 2005 2:46 pm
Location: Canada

Re: Gene-sharing possible between viruses, protozoa & bacteria?

Postby ijustwrite » Mon Jan 30, 2012 1:25 am

I guess it's because my topic falls somewhere in between so I decided to re-post that. Nevertheless, my apologies... :oops:
Life is like having the best nose hair clippers
ijustwrite
Garter
Garter
 
Posts: 6
Joined: Fri Jan 27, 2012 4:48 pm

Postby canalon » Mon Jan 30, 2012 1:59 am

[Mod Mode] No problem, I corrected that. And if you prefer the other forum, let me know by PM, I can correct that easily[/Mod mode]

Interesting about the RSV. References?
Patrick

Science has proof without any certainty. Creationists have certainty without
any proof. (Ashley Montague)
User avatar
canalon
Inland Taipan
Inland Taipan
 
Posts: 3909
Joined: Thu Feb 03, 2005 2:46 pm
Location: Canada

Re: Gene-sharing possible between viruses, protozoa & bacteria?

Postby ijustwrite » Mon Jan 30, 2012 11:52 am

When you mentioned about the RSV copying other genes, that made me interested in it.
Do you happen to know of any free online medical or scientific journals that mentions its discovery? :?:
Life is like having the best nose hair clippers
ijustwrite
Garter
Garter
 
Posts: 6
Joined: Fri Jan 27, 2012 4:48 pm


Return to General Discussion

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 7 guests