Download e-book for iPad: A Planet of Viruses: Second Edition by Carl Zimmer

By Carl Zimmer

ISBN-10: 022629420X

ISBN-13: 9780226294209

The prior yr has been considered one of viral panic—panic about viruses, that's. via headlines, public overall healthiness warnings, and no less than one selfmade hazmat swimsuit, we have been reminded of the robust strength of viruses. they're the smallest dwelling issues identified to technology, but they could carry the total planet of their sway.
A Planet of Viruses is Carl Zimmer’s eye-opening examine the hidden global of viruses. Zimmer, the preferred technology author and writer of National Geographic’s award-winning weblog The Loom, has up to date this variation to incorporate the tales of latest outbreaks, akin to Ebola, MERS, and chikungunya virus; new clinical discoveries, akin to a hundred-million-year-old virus that contaminated the typical ancestor of armadillos, elephants, and people; and new findings that express why weather swap could lead on to even deadlier outbreaks. Zimmer’s lucid causes and engaging tales exhibit how deeply people and viruses are intertwined. Viruses helped provide upward thrust to the 1st life-forms, are answerable for lots of our such a lot devastating illnesses, and should proceed to manage our destiny for hundreds of years. completely readable, and as reassuring because it is horrifying, A Planet of Viruses is a desirable travel of a powerful hidden world.

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Extra info for A Planet of Viruses: Second Edition

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Phages do not belong to a single species, and different phage species behave differently toward their hosts. Herelle had found a vicious form, called a lytic phage, which kills its host as it multiplies. Bordet had found a more benevolent kind of virus, which came to be known as a temperate phage. Temperate phages treat bacteria much like human papillomaviruses treat our skin cells. When a temperate phage infects its host microbe, its host does not burst open with new phages. Instead, the temperate phage’s genes are joined into the host’s own DNA, and the host continues to grow and divide.

How marine phages rule the sea 51 Avian leukocyte viruses bud from a human white blood cell Our Inner Parasites Endogenous Retroviruses and Our Virus-Â�Riddled Genomes The idea that a host’s genes could have come from viruses is almost philosophical in its weirdness. We like to think of our genomes as our ultimate identity. The fact that bacteria have acquired much of their DNA from viruses raises baffling questions. Do they have a distinct identity of their own? Or are they just hybrid Frankensteins, their clear lines of identity blurred away?

When microbes in the ocean die, some of their carbon rains down to the sea floor. Over millions of years, this microbial snow can steadily make the planet cooler and cooler. What’s more, these dead organisms can turn to rock. The White Cliffs of Dover, for example, are made up of the chalky shells of single-Â�cell organisms called coccolithophores. how marine phages rule the sea 49 Viruses kill these geoengineers by the trillions every day. As the microbial victims die, they spill open and release a billion tons of carbon a day.

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A Planet of Viruses: Second Edition by Carl Zimmer

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