Africa-Press – Eritrea. Researchers believe that further study is needed to dispel concerns that the viruses could become a ticking time bomb once they reemerge from their ice-shuttered dwelling.
A prominent Russian virologist has stated that so-called zombie viruses, which were recently unearthed from permafrost, are “absolutely harmless” to a human organism.
He also referred to plenty of modern-day pathogens which pose a threat to people and which are yet to be explored by researchers. He spoke several weeks after an international team of scientists led by microbiologist Jean-Marie Alempic from the French National Centre for Scientific Research discovered and reanimated an array of never-before-seen viruses from the Siberian permafrost.
A 48,500-year-old amoeba virus is one of 13 outlined by the scientists in their study, with nine of them thought to be tens of thousands of years old.
The researchers argued that the viruses still had the potential to be infectious pathogens that are capable of posing a significant threat to people. “It is therefore legitimate to ponder the risk of ancient viral particles remaining infectious and getting back into circulation by the thawing of ancient permafrost layers,” the scientists pointed out.