HOME >> BIOLOGY >> NEWS
Researchers Find Unexpected Feature In Plankton Nervous System

Few people ever observe the world's most prevalent animal, but scrutiny by University of Hawaii researchers may change the way scientists look at the little insect-like ocean-dwelling invertebrates known as calanoid copepods. The UH researchers have discovered that nerve cells of the species Undinula vulgaris are coated with myelin -- a substance generally thought to be limited, with very few exceptions, to humans and other vertebrates. If upheld, their findings, which are reported in the April 15 issue of the journal Nature, will require revision of basic biology textbook discussions of the difference between vertebrates and invertebrates.

Researchers at the University of Hawaii at Manoa's Pacific Biomedical Research Center, observed myelin in transmission electron microscope images of the calanoid copepods collected in Oahu's Kaneohe Bay. The authors had previously observed that Undinula vulgaris are unusually fast in sprinting from danger -- responding to stimuli about a hundred times faster than humans. Myelin is a white fatty sheath that coats parts of the vertebrate nervous system, including the long axons of nerve cells. Like insulation on an electric wire, myelin protects and speeds the electrical signal, providing a competitive advantage for organisms that must respond quickly to capture food or escape predators. Such an advantage is particularly important for large animals, in which nerve signals must travel long distances from sensory cells to brain and brain to muscles, and scientists had assumed myelin was a feature nearly exclusive to vertebrates.

Most calanoid copepods are only 3 millimeters long or less and eat phytoplankton (plant plankton), other zooplankton or detritus. The most prevalent of the zooplankton, they constitute the biggest source of protein in the ocean and form a critical link in the marine food chain between the phytoplankton on which they feed and the krill, fish and whales that feed on them. In essence, they are the
'"/>

Contact: Petra Lenz
petra@pbrc.hawaii.edu
808-956-8003
University of Hawaii
14-Apr-1999


Page: 1 2

Related biology news :

1. Researchers determine genetic cause of Timothy syndrome
2. Researchers find color sensitive atomic switch in bacteria
3. Researchers identify protein promoting vascular tumor growth
4. Researchers devise potent new tools to curb ivory poaching
5. Researchers create nanotubes that change colors, form nanocarpet and kill bacteria
6. Researchers ID chlorophyll-regulating gene
7. Researchers develop fast track way to discover how cells are regulated
8. Researchers identify distinctive signature for metastatic prostate cancer
9. Researchers report new gene test for isolated cleft lip and palate
10. Researchers discover why mutant gene causes colon cancer
11. Researchers identify the genomes controlling elements

Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:


(Date:8/26/2020)... , ... August 25, 2020 , ... Modality Solutions, ... Inc. magazine’s 2020 annual Inc. 5000 list. The list is the most prestigious ranking ... 2019 as well, and for this year’s list, reported three-year revenue growth of 71 ...
(Date:8/21/2020)... ... August 20, 2020 , ... ... Hassan Movahhed , a Clinical Operations executive with expertise in clinical trial planning ... the firm as an Expert Consultant. Throughout his career, Mr. Movahhed has helped ...
(Date:8/5/2020)... ... August 05, 2020 , ... Regenative Labs has received approval from the Centers ... making them the first Wharton’s jelly allografts to be assigned a Q code and ... are the first Wharton’s jelly allograft product to be recognized as a 361 HCT/P ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:8/3/2020)... ... August 03, 2020 , ... ERT, the ... CEO has been named one of the 100 most inspiring individuals in the ... honorees are selected based on how they have inspired their colleagues and affected ...
(Date:7/31/2020)... ... 2020 , ... Diversified Technologies, Inc. has introduced a full ... drive Klystrons, TWTs, IOTs, and magnetrons. , DTI Radar Transmitter Systems ... push-pull configuration; yielding fast fall time for a capacitive load. These all solid-state ...
(Date:7/31/2020)... ... July 29, 2020 , ... The ... centers in 16 countries, has reached its 20th anniversary of worldwide use. Introduced ... use at top universities including University of Pennsylvania, University of Michigan, University of ...
(Date:7/18/2020)... ... July 16, 2020 , ... “We are thrilled to ... Bioactives. “It’s the only technology of its kind on the market and we were ... with the protective capacity of traditional cultured ingredients, creating a natural way to extend ...
Breaking Biology Technology:
Cached News: