The LUCA and its complex virome

  title={The LUCA and its complex virome},
  author={Mart Krupovic and Valerian V. Dolja and Eugene V. Koonin},
  journal={Nature Reviews Microbiology},
The last universal cellular ancestor (LUCA) is the most recent population of organisms from which all cellular life on Earth descends. The reconstruction of the genome and phenotype of the LUCA is a major challenge in evolutionary biology. Given that all life forms are associated with viruses and/or other mobile genetic elements, there is no doubt that the LUCA was a host to viruses. Here, by projecting back in time using the extant distribution of viruses across the two primary domains of life… 

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