Virus's: Life or non life?

Discussion in 'Biology & Genetics' started by paddoboy, May 20, 2020.

  1. billvon Valued Senior Member

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    Because you get an idea in your head and then for the next six months that idea is responsible for EVERYTHING. Microtubules cause consciousness. Quorum sensing is responsible for everything else. And if anyone disagrees, they are ignorant and wrong.
     
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  3. DaveC426913 Valued Senior Member

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    No. There is no such requirement for life.

    And now you know what's off -topic here too.
     
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  5. Write4U Valued Senior Member

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    Where did I say that? That is dishonest posting and does not belong in a science forum.
    Please stop that.
     
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  7. Write4U Valued Senior Member

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    18,777
    Another falsehood contained in that post! When have I ever criticized a poster for posting mainstream science? I don't call people names unless in response to an insult.
    You are projecting your behavior on me. My posts are being called wrong and ignorant, primarily as kneejerk responses to new and unfamiliar scientific developments.
    You're the one being the hypocrite, not I.
     
  8. James R Just this guy, you know? Staff Member

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    The message here is: try to post on topic. That's all.

    No. Intra-species communication has nothing to do with the question of whether something is living. That question is necessarily prior the one that asks something about communication.

    There are other threads where you're talking about quorum sensing etc. There's no need to inject that topic into yet another thread in an off-topic way.

    You have a habit of doing this - constantly inserting your pet topics in wherever you believe there's an opportunity to divert the conversation off topic and into one of your preferred discussion streams.

    Discussing quorum sensing does nothing to help us understand what constitutes living, which is what this thread is about.
     
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  9. Write4U Valued Senior Member

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    18,777
    Thank you James for your patience. I understand your concern and I respect your observation.

    Let me assure you that my posts are made in good faith and a sincere desire to contribute to a discussion about life and living things, and at what point an organism may qualify for the title "living thing". Allow me to explain the possible importance of "quorum sensing" in the "life" of a virus.

    After mulling this over, it seems that we can restrict the question of "life and non-life" to single celled, very small (nano-scale) size, bio-chemical patterns. (this realization actually prompted my spontaneous segue)

    Bacteria are extremely versatile in their adaptive abilities and feeding range. Bacteria hunt and talk to themselves. Bateria are "alive". Communication seems to be qualifier for a living organism.

    A social bacterium with versatile habits
    https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2019/03/190322105725.htm

    OTOH, Viruses are very limited in what they can do, due to their, because the are unable to self-replicate and always need a host. Yet they are extremely versatile in their ability to control the host's homeostasis and immunological defenses.

    My reference to quorum sensing was only as it applies to viruses (not bacteria).

    The secret social lives of viruses .
    Scientists are listening in on the ways viruses communicate and cooperate. Decoding what the microbes are saying could be a boon to human health.

    Geneticist Rotem Sorek could see that his bacteria were sick — so far, so good. He had deliberately infected them with a virus to test whether each ailing microbe soldiered on alone or communicated with its allies to fight the attack
    .
    It was an accidental discovery that would fundamentally change scientists’ understanding of how viruses behave.
    https://www.nature.com/articles/d41586-019-01880-6 (PDF version)

    Seems like bacteriophages (or phages) practise "horticulture" and exert "communal" control over the host cell's mitotic machinery.

    Did the discovery of viruses' functional behaviors shift the definition of "life" any ? Should we consider ability to communicate as part of the general definition of a 'living organism?
    By that modified standard a virus would be a "living" organism, no?

    And that brings my argument full cycle.

    p.s. I'll refrain from any further posts in this thread lest I interfere with different perspectives from other posters.
     
    Last edited: Jul 13, 2020
  10. Hipparchia Registered Senior Member

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    648
    Precisely, but I would add this: it is unproductive and unscientific to worry about what is nothing more than a human definition to which viruses (and all other forms of life and non-life) are quite indifferent.

    What we learn about viruses through studying them will not change by one iota because we have described them as living rather than non-living, of vice versa. I will add the caveat that this might not be the case if a researcher allows himself to be mislead by a bias towards expecting certain behaviour from a living over a non-living entity. But then, that wouldn't be good science.
     
  11. billvon Valued Senior Member

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    In hundreds of posts you have made on both topics.
     
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  12. Write4U Valued Senior Member

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    18,777
    You are prone to hysterical overstatement. Please do not sensationalize your observation. It's demeaning to both of us.

    How many posts on a topic do you find appropriate and acceptable?

    Do you accuse a scientist, who spends a lifetime proving his/her hypothesis and writing several books on the subject, of spending too much time on that topic? I am not entitled to such freedom? Or do you just want to shut me up, because you do not agree with me?

    Why don't you prove me wrong, instead of telling everybody that I am wrong without offering proof, which always prompts me to respond with more information supporting my proposition. Do you expect me to slink away like a beaten dog? (to sensationalize my emotion....

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    )

    I'll gratefully accept any and all pertinent information, including verifiable "correction" on the substance of my posts.
     
    Last edited: Oct 9, 2020
  13. Write4U Valued Senior Member

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    18,777
    A blatantly false statement. I posed the question (along with supporting data) based on the published research by Stuart Hameroff, who spent years in researching the idea.
    A blatantly false statement. I posed the question (along with supporting data) based on the published research by Bonnie Bassler, who spent years in researching the idea.

    What do you want from me, a formal dissertation?
    Are you even qualified to peer review such papers when written by "knowledgeable" scientists?
    If so, show me the falsification.
    If not, why do you bother commenting at all ? My presentation style? Please..................

    AND ONCE AGAIN YOU HAVE MANAGED TO TAKE THIS THREAD OFF-TOPIC!
     
    Last edited: Oct 9, 2020
  14. Write4U Valued Senior Member

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    18,777
    And what has been presented that sheds any light other than what is on record as an acceptable but outdated concept of what constitutes a living organisms?

    If we know all there is to know, why does this thread exist? A regurgitation of what has been discussed ad nauseam, without any new evidence?

    I don't introduce these things unless I believe they are directly related to the OP and may help shed some light on the question by introducing a newly discovered aspect of the very oldest and simplest living things, like bacteria.

    Instead of instant rejection, why is this remarkable ability of communication (a common denominator of all living things), not even considered as an item of interest?
     
    Last edited: Oct 15, 2020
  15. Write4U Valued Senior Member

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    18,777
    The scientific study of communication can be divided into:
    • Information theory which studies the quantification, storage, and communication of information in general;
    • Communication studies which concerns human communication;
    • Biosemiotics which examines communication in and between living organisms in general.
    • Biocommunication which exemplifies sign-mediated interactions in and between organisms of all domains of life, including viruses.
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Communication
     
  16. Michael 345 New year. PRESENT is 72 years oldl Valued Senior Member

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    12,854
    So its a common denominator of all living things

    So what

    You could envision viruses with mobile phones chatting to each other

    Being a common denominator does not make it a

    REQUIREMENT

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  17. Write4U Valued Senior Member

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    18,777
    No I cannot, nor can you!
    OK, justify that to me. Are you telling me that living things do not need to communicate? Name me one living thing that does not communicate in one form or another.

    Are you proposing that communication does not provide an evolutionary survival advantage for living organisms?

    Natural Selection made a mistake by producing an unnecessary complex ability over a few billion years?
    Think this through, Michael.
     
    Last edited: Oct 15, 2020
  18. Write4U Valued Senior Member

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    18,777
    Communication as the Main Characteristic of Life
    Abstract and Figures
    i.e. communication is a requirement for life....

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    4.1 The biocommunication approach identified four levels in which cellular organisms are involved since the start of their life until death.

    https://www.researchgate.net/figure...n-which-cellular-organisms-are_fig1_329486372
     
    Last edited: Oct 15, 2020
  19. Michael 345 New year. PRESENT is 72 years oldl Valued Senior Member

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    Thought though

    I'm out

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  20. paddoboy Valued Senior Member

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    I'm inclined to go with you and Dave on this.
     
  21. Write4U Valued Senior Member

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    Of course you can go with that argument. It's a meaningless deepity.

    By that silly argument all of science is meaningless and unproductive. The universe itself is quite indifferent to what humans do or think or even if they exist.

    To whom is the OP question directed? To humans or to viruses?

    continued in; Corona Virus 2019-nCoV in World Events subforum.
     
  22. Write4U Valued Senior Member

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    18,777
    Additional context for the examination of "life" and what constitutes a living object.

    Properties of Life

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    Figure 2.The leaves of this sensitive plant (Mimosa pudica) will instantly droop and fold when touched. After a few minutes, the plant returns to normal. (credit: Alex Lomas)
    And now it has been established that bacteria (and recently "discovered", viruses) can communicate with each other and engage in concerted action.
    Why this is important is the fact that a single bacterium or virus cannot overwhelm a large organism. Single celled bacteria and viruses are much too small to attack a host and require time to multiply to a sufficient number in order to overwhelm the organism's defenses. This "key survival strategy" is triggered via an intraspecies chemical communication, dubbed "quorum sensing" .
    https://courses.lumenlearning.com/suny-wmopen-biology1/chapter/the-characteristics-of-life/

    A virus uses the host's mitotic mechanism to duplicate. It does so by attaching its own DNA to the host's DNA and induces the cell to start the duplication process and in that process the host's cell also duplicates the virus. A very clever parasitic ability.

    Watch the Bonnie Bassler video !
     
  23. Write4U Valued Senior Member

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    18,777
    deleted for duplication
     
    Last edited: Oct 15, 2020

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