Turritopsis nutricula (immortal jellyfish) – eternal life in the depths of the ocean

Every human since ancient times dreamed of immortality. It would seem that eternal life on the planet is impossible, since the aging process of living organisms is irreversible. But in the XIX century, the famous zoologist Fernando Boero discovered something that turned all the ideas of evolution upside down.

For some time, the scientist conducted routine experiments on marine animals in the aquarium. There were also small, unattractive jellyfish Turritopsis nutricula (nutricula). Their size do not exceed 5 mm.

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Then Boero abandoned the experiment and forgot about the aquarium. The water in it dried up and all the animals died. He already wanted to throw all out from aquarium, but he noticed that there were no dead nutricles in it. Where did they go?

Turritopsis nutricula

Turritopsis nutricula

But instead of them the scientist discovered small polyps – one of the initial stages of development of jellyfish. That was incredible! The researcher again filled the tank with water, and after a while, Turritopsis nutricula was formed from the polyps.

nutricula

nutricula

After a while the aquarium was drained again and the process was repeated – the nutritles again turned into polyps! That is, the process of aging in these coelenterates is not present, or this process proceeds so slowly that it can be neglected.

With a more detailed study of nutricula, it became clear that their life cycle is radically different not only from the cycle of other jellyfish, but also all other living beings that live on Earth. It is known that jellyfish finish their lives after reproduction.

immortal jellyfish

immortal jellyfish

But nutricle completely rebuilds its cells and again turns into a polyp, from which it again enters the jellyfish stage! And this process can be repeated an infinite number of times! Therefore, Turritopsis nutricula became known as an immortal jellyfish. Today it is the only organism on the globe that can live
forever.

In our time, scientists are actively engaged in researching the immortal jellyfish to reveal the secret of eternal life.

Turritopsis-nutricula

Turritopsis-nutricula

Of course, the nutricle can not live forever. Turritopsis nutricula are also susceptible to disease, like other animals. They die in the mouth of the fish that feed on them. If they were immortal in all senses, then for a few million years of existence they would fill the entire World Ocean. However, this does
not happen.

But who knows, maybe somewhere in the waters of the Caribbean Sea (originally immortal nutricula lived in it), lives an individual of this jellyfish, whose age has already passed the mark of several hundred thousand years.

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