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Message Subject Something Just Went BEZERK in the Gulf of Mexico. The US Navy just sunk a French Submarine
Poster Handle BadHairDay
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A quick re-cap - Turritopsis nutricula. The Immortal jellyfish, said to be biologically immortal. Now, this doesn't mean that it's immune to disease or injury, but it is immune to the leading cause of death: aging. That's because it can revert back to the polyp stage even after it reaches sexual maturity. In essence, it can stay alive forever, since every time it grows up, its cells undergo transdifferentiation to become young and sexually immature again. That's one way to live forever. So if this special jellyfish can do it, why can't we?

It's a complicated question, and scientists think the answers may be deep within the nuclei of our cells, where the building blocks of life are stored. See, every time one cell replicates to become two, its DNA also has to replicate. And when it does that, little bits at the end break off. These areas are called telomeres, and they're there for that very reason: to buffer against breakage when DNA replicates, so the important bits don't get lost. But eventually, after enough replication, the telomeres get broken off too. It's called the Hayflick limit, named for Leonard Hayflick, the first dude to notice that there's a finite number of times a cell can divide. But if we can use special enzymes, like telomerase, to increase the life of the telomere, we may also be able to prolong the life of the cell.

The building blocks of life? or the specific water stored in the cells themselves? With the ability mentioned above, theoretically the same water in those cells has been stored, like Vostok's water, for millions of years.

A roving, mobile version of Vostok and other life reserves, just in case?
 
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