The First Known Immortal Animal
On the face of it, immortality sounds like science fiction. The possibility to indefinitely extend ones’ life would hold a lot of appeal. Throughout history, tales have been told about those who have searched for the means to make themselves immortal. The fountain of eternal youth and the Holy Grail are often the subjects of these stories. Unfortunately for us, they have remained just that – stories.
Well, one particular animal has achieved what humans have longed for since the dawn of time.
There Is An Immortal Animal?
Scientists have recently discovered the world’s first known immortal animal. A jellyfish species named Turritopsis nutricula. This jellyfish can reenter an earlier polyp stage, restarting its lifecycle after it mates.
The jellyfish can repeat this process indefinitely, meaning that it will never die from aging, ever. This doesn’t mean the jellyfish can’t be killed however. It just means that unlike other animals, it will not die from old age. Researchers hope that studying the Turritopsis will lead to breakthroughs in reversing the human aging process.
The jellyfish are originally from the Caribbean but have since spread all over the world.
Photo is available under a Creative Commons Attribution license by Wikicommons.
Reference – Gilbert, Scott F. (2006). “Cheating Death: The Immortal Life Cycle of Turritopsis“