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Goldfish Level Alert

cercaria, you must must must read more about helacyton gartleri. I am trying to work it into my theory of goldfish immortality the more I am learning!

This of course, assumes you don't already know about them. If you do, that is something you knew before I did, and the reason book learnin with a tuition is sometimes better than my tried and true shotgun method.


( 5 comments — Leave a comment )
Dec. 7th, 2005 07:20 pm (UTC)
That was REALLY interesting and sorta' creepy! What exactly does it have to do with Goldfish?
Dec. 8th, 2005 03:33 pm (UTC)
i have this thing see... goldfish are immortal. not in the traditional vampire sense, but in the "they never die of natural causes" sorta way. there are some goldfish in china which experts have no way to age, but local legends put them in the hundreds of years.

i have done a LOT of biochemical research on goldfish cellular processes, as well as thier physiological makeup, and potential evolutionary reasons for this innovation.

without disease, starvation, or shock, goldfish never die.
Dec. 7th, 2005 08:00 pm (UTC)
From what I recall, that "immortality" is entirely linked to that cancer's ability to produce telomerase. Note: Sorry, I'm going to ramble a bit about bio stuff for a moment.

Under normal conditions, telomerase is produced mainly by stem cells (and egg/sperm cells), where it adds tiny, repeating segments of DNA to the ends of chromosomes. Usually, by about 20 weeks after conception, the human body has lost the ability to produce telomerase.

These segments at the ends of the chromosomes are called telomeres, and they protect the chromosome's tips. Each time a cell divides, the telomeres on its chromosomes become shorter. They shorten because the process our bodies uses to reproduce strands of DNA requires RNA to first grab hold of the DNA strand -- the part that it When they drop to a certain length, the cell stops dividing and gradually dies.

Telomerase is found in something like 80-90 percent of cancers. The enzyme, if I remember right, is what helps cancer cells keep their telomeres at a constant length, enabling the cells to divide an infinite number of times ... ie, becoming immortal.

End of rambling.
Dec. 8th, 2005 03:36 pm (UTC)
Telomerase and chromosome splitting
you are spot on on the built in "life counter" encoded in our genetic structure. the key question to me though, is why, in MANY kinds of cancer (and certainly in human cells) why in all other cases, the extremity of a harsh or sterile environment disrupts the play of the cells's cycle, but in the case of Helacyton gartleri it has managed to not only overcome this process, but innovate beyond the bounds of most other cellular derivitives of like origin.
Dec. 9th, 2005 05:11 pm (UTC)
I know about HeLa
I have worked with HeLa cells before. To say they are immortal is somewhat misleading. They still need to be maintained and cultured on a media plate. If scientists had never found these cells and continued to culture them...there would be none. So on their own they are not immortal.

I'm not sure how the growth process of these cells is maintained but most cancers if given a kinase rich environment will grow on a pitri dish. Kinase is a known cyclin which aids in mitosis and coninues the replication process. In fact, a cyclin error on any cellular pathway will give a cell immortality in the sense it will coninue to divide without stopping. The definition of cancer itself is cell immortality.

It has nothing to do with telomerase. I think your friend is thinking of mieosis, which creates telomerase. As you age, your cells divide and your DNA along with it. During the cell replication process (mitosis), your telomeres(the ends of DNA rich in A-G code but not a true part of your genetic make up) are sort of eaten away if that makes sense. Some scientists believe you could live forever if you had really long telomeres. Teleomerae softens the telomere shortening process but does not inhibit it.

This is a good reference: http://users.rcn.com/jkimball.ma.ultranet/BiologyPages/T/Telomeres.html
note there are many cancers which are essentialy immortal.

How is this like goldfish?
( 5 comments — Leave a comment )


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