Dec 10, 2009

Yet Another Record

I know I just posted on the naked mole-rat, but my favorite animal has just made the news yet again, so it deserves another mention.

Recent research has shown that naked mole-rats have set yet another record (among many): they can go the longest of all mammals without oxygen. Their warrens are disgusting and stuffy--high in carbon dioxide and low in oxygen. But still they thrive. In fact, they can go six times longer in a hypoxic conditions than other rodents.

We mammals have all endured low oxygen environments: the womb. But somehow, the naked mole-rat, who is also immune to pain, is able to maintain an infant-like ability to go without oxygen. This has great significance for humans, as further research into this ability might be able to help those who have suffered damage from low-oxygen conditions, such as those caused by heart attacks and strokes.

Oh, and this rodent is one of the longest living of their kin: the pregnant female below is 15-years-old.

Thanks for the link, Ida.

Photo source: Rochelle Buffenstein/City College of New York via LiveScience.com

8 comments:

DangGina said...

wow. i've never seen anything quite like it--especially the full body shot of the preggo nudie...

Angelo said...

This image is about 32 different varieties of gross...

KittyChymira said...

Haha, she looks like a stuffed olive. I love it. Look at that healthy glow!

Frodannah said...

Immune to pain??? I wish I was! = )

vinacms.info said...

terror too

One Womans Thoughts said...

I think some mornings this creature is looking back at me from the mirror.

Andy said...

he might be freezing xD, i think he looks kinda cute :)

Meg said...

Just for the record, mammals don't go without oxygen in utero. They get it dissolved in blood via the umbilical cord. Mammals only need to breathe when they're born because the umbilical cord is broken and mom can't breathe for them any more.