"Lifeless" prion proteins are capable of evolution

Scientists have shown for the first time that "lifeless" prion proteins, devoid of all genetic material, can evolve just like higher forms of life.
This means that this pattern of Darwinian evolution appears to be universally active.

In viruses, mutation is linked to changes in nucleic acid sequence that leads to resistance.

Now, this adaptability has moved one level down- to prions and protein folding - and it's clear that you do not need nucleic acid (DNA or RNA) for the process of evolution.

said by Charles Weissmann, head of Scripps Florida's department of infectology who led the study.
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