Scientists have found an unexpected gene in a species of transparent worms that could help unlock the secrets of how animals regenerate. The gene, known as ‘regenerin’, was found in the Mastermind-like3 (MmL3) gene family, which is known to be involved in the regeneration of animals.
The team, led by Dr. Xiaoping Zhu from Soochow University in China, made the discovery while studying the planarian flatworm, a species that is able to regenerate its body and brain after being cut in half.
While it was known that the MmL3 gene family was important for regeneration, the function of the ‘regenerin’ gene was a mystery. However, the new study found that when the ‘regenerin’ gene is absent, the worms are unable to regenerate their brains.
Interestingly, the ‘regenerin’ gene is also found in other animals, including humans. This suggests that the gene could be important for the regeneration of other tissues, such as the heart or nerves.
The findings could have important implications for the treatment of injuries and diseases. If the ‘regenerin’ gene could be activated in humans, it might be possible to regenerate damaged tissue and organs.
The study has been published in the journal Science Advances.
Using the specific gene editing tool CRISPR, scientists have discovered a gene that allows for transparency in certain species of worms. This unusual gene, which was found in the Hawaiian bobtail squid, helps the squid to camouflage itself against predators by making its body transparent.
The discovery of this gene could have important implications for the field of medicine, as it may help to improve the way we monitor and treat diseases. In particular, it could be used to create ‘transparent’ animals that could be used for testing new drugs and therapies.
This research is still in its early stages, and it is not yet clear what other implications the discovery of this gene may have. However, it is an exciting step forward in our understanding of transparent animals and how they are able to camouflage themselves.