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REFERENCE TO OLD EARTH VIRUS
The debate has raged for centuries as to whether a virus ought to be considered “alive” or not. In simplest terms, the virus is composed of a capsid (outer protein coat) within which resides its genetic code (either DNA or RNA). The virus infects living cells and effectively “hijacks” the machinery of the cell to create more copies of itself before bursting out of the host cell membrane (lysis) and spreading to other cells. Human and alien histories are rich with examples of the brutal efficiency of this mechanism. Entire species, races and even worlds have vanished from existence after succumbing to the simple virus.
The lack of a traditional reproductive ability and respiration have been at the crux of the viral “life” (or lack thereof) debate. Whatever the case, viruses continue to thrive in virtually every environment. Wherever there is life, and even where there is none to speak of, one can rest assured viruses of one type or another most certainly lie dormant, waiting for just the right conditions to begin their simple, automatic replication process.