A species of rotifers has resurrected and successfully cloned after “hibernating” for 24,000 years in permafrost in Siberia (Russia), Russian scientists report.
Stas Malavin, a researcher at the Institute of Physical Chemistry and Soil Biology in Pushchino, a co-author of the report, said the discovery raises questions about the mechanisms protozoans use to survive long. so.
“Our report is clear evidence that multicellular organisms can survive for tens of thousands of years in a state of hibernation, with almost no metabolism,” he told AFP.
Using a rig, the team collected samples from the Alazeya River in the Arctic. Using the carbon method, they determined the age of the specimen to range from 23,960 to 24,485.
Previously, scientists had found that roundworms can revive after 30,000 years of hibernation. Mosses and some plants have similar abilities.
“We can use this organism as a model to study survival in hibernation or drought in this group of organisms, as well as compare with other animals such as water bears or roundworms.” Mr. Malavin said.
Rotifers (also known as rotifers) are a phylum of multicellular microorganisms that range in length from 0.1 to 0.5 mm. They usually live in fresh water, although some species live in salt water.
The rotifers get their name from the tufts of cilia around their mouths that resemble a spinning wheel. Rotifers use these tufts of hair to move and eat, as this organ creates a stream of water to roll food into its mouth. They can reproduce both sexually and asexually.