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Herpes shows how human migrated

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To confirm the theory that humans spread out from Africa tens of thousands of years ago, all you have to do is follow the cold sores. Or, to be more precise, follow the mutation patterns encoded in the genome of the virus that causes those cold sores.

That's what researchers at the University of Wisconsin at Madison did: In the journal PLOS ONE, they describe how they sequenced the genomes of 31 samples of herpes simplex virus type-1 to reconstruct how it hitchhiked on humans as they dispersed around the world.

The results match the pattern proposed by the "Out of Africa" theory, which has become the most widely accepted scenario for ancient human migration. The analysis showed that African strains of the virus contained the most genetic diversity — suggesting that they had the oldest roots.

I know there's a joke here, I just can't find it.

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Frank Merton

It's like a crossword puzzle; you feel greater confidence in your results if the up clues fit with the across clues.

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It started with a kiss...

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