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28 viruses unknown to science found in melting glaciers of Tibet



BioRxiv has published a preliminary report on dangerous finds made during the 2015 Sino-American expedition to Tibet. Then the scientists took cores from the 50-meter depth of the melting glacier, mining ice 15,000 years old. Further study in the laboratory revealed the presence of 33 viral groups in it, of which 28 were detected for the first time in history. And this is only the tip of the iceberg of problems that is approaching us with global warming.

Scientists warn that it is not heat that is dangerous, but the destruction of familiar climatic mechanisms. The viruses found could lie under the ice for another thousand years, without any danger. Instead, hundreds of new forms of microorganisms are to be expected now - taking into account polar caps, glaciers and permafrost, the vast territory of the planet is an effective freezer in which these microbes were buried in the past. Now they have a chance to come to life - with unpredictable consequences.

There is great doubt that the viruses that killed dinosaurs are deadly to humans. But it is definitely known that many corpses in official cemeteries beyond the Arctic Circle are infected with diseases quite well-known to us. Permafrost is melting, which the whole world was convinced of in 2017, when the supposedly highly reliable genetic seed store on Svalbard was flooded. In Siberia, scientists continually remove from the earth the perfectly preserved corpses of ancient animals - if wool is preserved, then there will be fleas that are potentially infected with proto-plague or its analogues.

To make matters worse, meltwater from millennial ice already seeps into aquifers, flows into rivers and lakes. The process of releasing old microbes is in full swing, and it is not known how our world will be populated tomorrow.

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