Effects of retroviruses on host genome function.

  title={Effects of retroviruses on host genome function.},
  author={Patrick Jern and John M. Coffin},
  journal={Annual review of genetics},
For millions of years, retroviral infections have challenged vertebrates, occasionally leading to germline integration and inheritance as ERVs, genetic parasites whose remnants today constitute some 7% to 8% of the human genome. Although they have had significant evolutionary side effects, it is useful to view ERVs as fossil representatives of retroviruses extant at the time of their insertion into the germline and not as direct players in the evolutionary process itself. Expression of… 

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