Scientists track the propagation of cold sores back to the kisses of the bronze age

Scientists track the propagation of cold sores back to the kisses of the bronze age

Scientists track the propagation of cold sores back to the kisses of the bronze age – Scientists track the propagation of cold sores back to the kisses of the bronze age. The herpes virus that commonly causes cold sores was generalized at the beginning of bronze age migrations, and could have received an impulse from the kisses that come with him, he found a new study. Apparently, the variant we have today exceeded everyone else about 5,000 years ago.

Cold sores are a common viral infection. They appear as small blisters on the lips or around the lips, often grouped in patches. They spread from person to person by close contact, such as kisses and are caused by the Simple Herpes virus, which have two thirds of the population. Most cold sores heal in two or three weeks without leaving a scar.

The virus has a story that dates back to millions of years, with forms that infect various species, from corals to bats. Despite their contemporary prevalence among humans, scientists have had difficulties in finding ancient HSV-1 examples, the most common type of herpes virus. Now, a new study by Cambridge researchers hit Herpes Gold.

“The facial herpes is hidden in its host for life and is only transmitted through oral contact, so mutations occur slowly for centuries and millennia,” said Charlotte Holderroft, co -author in a statement. “We need to do deep time research to understand how DNA viruses like this evolve. Previously, genetic data for herpes only date back to 1925.

Tracking the herpes

The researchers were able to hunt herpes in the remains of four individuals, stretching for a period of 1,000 years and extract DNA from the roots of the teeth. At least two had gum disease and a third smoked tobacco. The oldest sample was from an adult man excavated in Russia about 1,500 years ago

Two other samples were from Cambridge, the United Kingdom. A woman from an early Anglo-Saxon cemetery, dating 6-7 centuries, and a young adult from the late fourteenth century, buried in the land of a medieval hospital. The final sample came from a young adult excavated in Holland, probably killed by a French attack in his city in 1672.

The DNA analysis of these four individuals showed that the herpes virus at that time was very similar to the virus seen today and dates back to the Bronze Age. Time coincides with mass migration to Europe from Eurasia grasslands and population growth that would have increased virus propagation rates.

But there is another factor that could have come into play, the researchers said. The first known registration of kisses is from a manuscript in southern Asia of the Bronze Age. The kisses probably arrived with the migrations west, providing a route for the virus to spread. Until then, Herpes transmitted from mother to girl, limiting her spread.

“Each species of primates has a herpes form, so we assume that it has been with us since our own species left Africa. However, something happened about five thousand years ago that allowed a herpes strain to overcome everyone else, possibly an increase in transmissions, which could have been related to kisses, ”concluded the Christian co -author Scheib.

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