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One of the main points of contention in the study of virus evolution is whether or not they appear before the last universal cellular ancestor (LUCA) or afterwards (commonly accepted: genes that "escaped" from host organisms aka the escape hypothesis or vagrancy hypothesis). Basically though, the LUCA is the most recent ancestor that all organisms living on ...


Great question. There are several hypotheses, but in reality no one really "knows" because this is incredibly difficult to prove. We may never know for certain. Anyway, on to the three main hypotheses, I got this from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Viral_evolution, I think you'll find it to be helpful. "There are three classical hypotheses on the origins of ...

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