1 June 2012 – Portland State University researchers have discovered a virus that may provide clues about the collective origin and evolutionary history of viruses – the most abundant organisms on earth. The newly discovered virus is a medley of sequences from different types of genetic material representing a previously unknown combination. The genome of this hybrid virus sequence contains genes homologous to both previously identified RNA and DNA viruses. The identification of a hybrid virus sequence indicates that at some point in time, viruses with different types of genetic material were swapping genes.
In this modern world of constantly evolving technology, researchers today have the advantage of extensive technological resources that allow them to take their questions to a new level.One such resource is still growing, but has already increased scholars’ ability to reach out and use materials that had once been unavailable. Online databases and the digitization of libraries and museum collections have opened up an unprecedented opportunity for collaboration and comprehension.