Herpes infection threatens thousands of students flocking to tropical
beaches this spring break. At the same time, offshore from those
tropical paradises, coral reefs may face an even greater threat from
Viral infection may be one of the reasons the world’s coral
populations have been plummeting. Microbiologists recently found
numerous varieties of the herpes virus infecting coral.
“We were shocked to find that so many coral viruses were in the
herpes family,” Rebecca Vega-Thurber, a microbiologist at Oregon State
University, said in a press release.
Understanding the herpes hazard could lead to diagnoses for previously mysterious ailments affecting coral reefs.