The world is full of all kinds of natural wonders. There are simply too many to count and we never tire of the surprises that nature has to offer.
Including all the wonders, it’s also worth wondering if we could regenerate a missing limb or a damaged organ. These abilities may look like something out of a futuristic sci-fi movie, but they exist in the animal kingdom. While most animals lack these abilities, there are a few that do. However, these few creatures can give us insight into how regeneration occurs in their species.
Axolotls are an aquatic species of salamander with an extraordinary ability to regenerate and are capable of regenerating organs, skin, limbs, or virtually any other part of the body.
Because axolotls never develop lungs and instead retain their gills, axolotls are permanent underwater residents. Even more amazing, axolotls can perfectly regenerate limbs and organs, without any scarring. They can do this as many times as needed in as little as three weeks.
Chameleons are very interesting animals that are well known for their unique ability to blend into the surrounding environment by changing color. Not only that, Chameleons are also able to regenerate their tails and limbs. They can also heal damaged nerves and skin during the regeneration process.
3. Mexican Tetra
Like zebrafish, Mexican tetras can regenerate heart tissue. Or rather, surface fish can; fish from cave populations have lost the ability. Their heart heals after injury, more like a human’s. The new study found that a number of genes are unregulated in cavefish.
Starfish can regrow arms that detach from their central disc, and some species have even been observed to complete the process in reverse: regrow an entire body from a lost arm. Starfish are among the most famous and dramatic examples, being able to grow an entirely new body from a single arm. Starfish also have the ability to regenerate neurons, which is not seen in many animals.
Sharks cannot regenerate organs or other body parts, but they can certainly regenerate their dental structures. They lose at least 30,000 teeth in their lifetime, but each lost tooth can grow back over a period of days or months. A shark is able to replace teeth lost up to 50 times in its lifetime.
Salamanders have been hailed as champions of regeneration, exhibiting a remarkable ability to regrow tissues, organs and even entire body parts, such as their limbs. As such, salamanders have provided key insights into the mechanisms by which cells, tissues and organs detect and regenerate missing or damaged parts.
Planarians are flatworms that have an incredible ability to regenerate. If you cut a planarian down the middle, each half would reform its missing parts and you would have two planarians in a matter of weeks.
8. Sea squirt
Marine animals called sea squirts can regenerate their entire body from a tiny fragment of blood vessel. Their secret is a special population of stem cells floating around in their blood. The discovery could help us understand how these regenerative abilities evolved.
Deer antlers are the only mammalian appendages capable of repeated cycles of regeneration; each year they break off and regrow from a blastema into large, branching structures of cartilage and bone that are used for combat and display.
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