A blind, cave-dwelling amphibian appears to live for more than 100 years, an inexplicable feat that may eventually (when explained) provide insights into aging in other species.
But first, scientists have to unravel the mystery of how the species -- known as "human fish" -- achieves such longevity. "We cannot, at this time, say how this animal manages to survive such a long time," said eco-physiologist linkurl:Yann Voituron,;http://umr5023.univ-lyon1.fr/index.php?pid=266〈=fr from the Université Claude Bernard - Lyon, first author of the study published online today (July 21) in Biology Letters. He was able to calculate the animal's extreme longevity by studying over 50 years of birth and death records of a 400-animal captive breeding colony at the Station D'Ecologie Expérimental du CNRS in Moulis, France. The human fish, also called an olm, is a small, pale salamander, weighing between...
Scientific Name: Proteus anguinus
Image: Yann Voituron
Y. Voituron et al., "Extreme lifespan of the human fish (Proteus Anguinus): a challenge for ageing mechanisms," Biology Letters AOP July 20, 2010 DOI: 10.1098/rsbl.2010.0539
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