Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Starfish that clone themselves live longer

25.06.2015

Starfish that reproduce through cloning avoid ageing to a greater extent than those that propagate through sexual reproduction. This is shown by a new research study in which researchers from the University of Gothenburg participated. The study has recently been published in the highly respected journal Heredity.

In the study, researchers investigated the telomere lengths and population genetics of a starfish, Coscinasterias tenuispina. The telomeres are located at the ends of the chromosomes, and affect the lifespan and health of an individual.


Coscinasterias tenuispina starfish

University of Gothenburg

The studied starfish exhibited both asexual and sexual reproduction. Asexual reproduction, or cloning, involves the starfish dividing itself into two or more parts, after which the new parts regenerate.

The researchers wanted to find out whether the populations that clone themselves the most have better health and signs of delayed ageing in relation to the populations that carry out more sexual reproduction. Both Mediterranean and Atlantic populations were studied.

“Our results from the genetic markers show that the starfish are more inclined to clone themselves in the Mediterranean,” says Helen Nilsson Sköld from the University of Gothenburg’s Sven Lovén Centre for Marine Sciences in Kristineberg. “In actual fact, there only appears to be a single clone off the Spanish Costa Brava. In the Atlantic, however, sexual reproduction is more common.”

Better health and a longer lifespan without sexual reproduction
There turned out to be a clear positive link between long telomeres and the level of clonality.

“We also noted that the telomeres were longer in the newly formed tissue than in the ‘old’ tissue in the same starfish,” adds Helen, who – together with Bethanie Carney Almrort – was one of the two researchers in the group from the University of Gothenburg.

“According to the researchers, this rejuvenation of the telomeres in connection with the formation of new tissue during cloning is probably one of possibly several explanations behind the particularly good health and long telomeres of clones.”

The principle behind the study, that clones avoid ageing by regulating telomeres, has also been previously studied by other researchers in flatworms.

“The strengths of our study are that we have confirmed these results in a completely different animal group, and that our data comes from wild populations,” she concludes.
The study was published in the May issue of Heredity, and was a collaboration between Swedish and Spanish researchers, including both biologists and medical researchers.

Link to the article: http://www.nature.com/hdy/journal/vaop/ncurrent/pdf/hdy201543a.pdf

Contact:
Helen Nilsson Sköld, The Sven Lovén Centre for Marine Sciences, Kristineberg
The University of Gothenburg
Tel.: +46 (0)31 7869547, helen.skold@gu.se

Weitere Informationen:

http://www.gu.se/english/about_the_university/news-calendar/News_detail//starfis...

Henrik Axlid | idw - Informationsdienst Wissenschaft

Further reports about: Mediterranean genetic markers good health lifespan populations starfish telomeres

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht For a chimpanzee, one good turn deserves another
27.06.2017 | Max-Planck-Institut für Mathematik in den Naturwissenschaften (MPIMIS)

nachricht New method to rapidly map the 'social networks' of proteins
27.06.2017 | Salk Institute

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Can we see monkeys from space? Emerging technologies to map biodiversity

An international team of scientists has proposed a new multi-disciplinary approach in which an array of new technologies will allow us to map biodiversity and the risks that wildlife is facing at the scale of whole landscapes. The findings are published in Nature Ecology and Evolution. This international research is led by the Kunming Institute of Zoology from China, University of East Anglia, University of Leicester and the Leibniz Institute for Zoo and Wildlife Research.

Using a combination of satellite and ground data, the team proposes that it is now possible to map biodiversity with an accuracy that has not been previously...

Im Focus: Climate satellite: Tracking methane with robust laser technology

Heatwaves in the Arctic, longer periods of vegetation in Europe, severe floods in West Africa – starting in 2021, scientists want to explore the emissions of the greenhouse gas methane with the German-French satellite MERLIN. This is made possible by a new robust laser system of the Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT in Aachen, which achieves unprecedented measurement accuracy.

Methane is primarily the result of the decomposition of organic matter. The gas has a 25 times greater warming potential than carbon dioxide, but is not as...

Im Focus: How protons move through a fuel cell

Hydrogen is regarded as the energy source of the future: It is produced with solar power and can be used to generate heat and electricity in fuel cells. Empa researchers have now succeeded in decoding the movement of hydrogen ions in crystals – a key step towards more efficient energy conversion in the hydrogen industry of tomorrow.

As charge carriers, electrons and ions play the leading role in electrochemical energy storage devices and converters such as batteries and fuel cells. Proton...

Im Focus: A unique data centre for cosmological simulations

Scientists from the Excellence Cluster Universe at the Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität Munich have establised "Cosmowebportal", a unique data centre for cosmological simulations located at the Leibniz Supercomputing Centre (LRZ) of the Bavarian Academy of Sciences. The complete results of a series of large hydrodynamical cosmological simulations are available, with data volumes typically exceeding several hundred terabytes. Scientists worldwide can interactively explore these complex simulations via a web interface and directly access the results.

With current telescopes, scientists can observe our Universe’s galaxies and galaxy clusters and their distribution along an invisible cosmic web. From the...

Im Focus: Scientists develop molecular thermometer for contactless measurement using infrared light

Temperature measurements possible even on the smallest scale / Molecular ruby for use in material sciences, biology, and medicine

Chemists at Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz (JGU) in cooperation with researchers of the German Federal Institute for Materials Research and Testing (BAM)...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Plants are networkers

19.06.2017 | Event News

Digital Survival Training for Executives

13.06.2017 | Event News

Global Learning Council Summit 2017

13.06.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Touch Displays WAY-AX and WAY-DX by WayCon

27.06.2017 | Power and Electrical Engineering

Drones that drive

27.06.2017 | Information Technology

Ultra-compact phase modulators based on graphene plasmons

27.06.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>