MicrobeWorld App

appsquarebannerad200x200

Join MicrobeWorld

Subscribe via Email

subscribe

Microbes After Hours

cheese-thumb-small

Click for more "Microbes After Hours" videos

Featured Image

Featured Video

Crowdsourced Microbes Heading to Station

Supporters

ASM House 200X200

Retroviruses R us

Image
About eight percent of human DNA is viral ā€“ remnants of ancestral infections with retroviruses. These endogenous retroviral sequences do not produce infectious viruses, and most are considered to be junk DNA. But some of them provide important functions. The protein called syncytin, which is essential for formation of the placenta, originally came to the genome of our ancestors, and those of other mammals, via a retrovirus infection. Another amazing role of endogenous retroviruses is that they regulate the stem cells that are the precursors of all the cells in our body.
 
 

Comments (0)

Collections (0)

 

American Society for Microbiology
2012 1752 N Street, N.W. ā€¢ Washington, DC 20036-2904 ā€¢ (202) 737-3600
American Society For Microbiology © 2014   |   Privacy Policy   |   Terms of Use