Billions of viruses are literally pouring all over his head

Billions of viruses are literally pouring all over his head

Scientists have estimated the rate of movement of virus particles in the lower atmosphere. It turned out that at the height of a couple of kilometers through every square meter down moves to several billion viruses a day.

An article with the results published in the journal International Society for Microbial Ecology Journal.

The number of viruses is much surpass all other forms of life on Earth: estimates say there should be only around 1030 in the oceans. Biologists have long noticed that even in the most remote parts of the Earth to nearly genetically identical viruses. This fact could not explain so how do these life forms are not capable of such far travel. It would be logical to explain this by the fact that viruses move through the air, but how exactly is this process was not known.

In the new work, the biologists were the first to assess how much virus gets into the region of the troposphere above the boundary layer (depending on the places to a height of 2 — 3 kilometers), a place where weather is formed, above the inner earth layers, but below the stratosphere, where planes fly. The exact mechanisms of their getting there is not known, however, there are indications that small specks of dust and tiny drops of water. Scientists have repeatedly observed, as likewise on the larger particles — moving bacteria. New data show that the viruses move to 9 — 461 times more rapidly than bacteria.

“A significant downward flow of bacteria and viruses from the atmosphere can affect the structure and function of affected ecosystems, the authors write in the article. Instead of clearly negative consequences, the presence of viruses in the atmosphere is a reservoir of organisms that allows ecosystems to adapt quickly to changes in the environment.”