The axolotl is a mysterious aquatic salamander species which boasts a crucial characteristic for science – it can regenerate its tissues, from limbs to organs and brain parts. Now, the scientists decoded the complete axolotl genome, taking one big step towards human tissue regeneration.
The axolotl salamanders are native from a lake near Mexico City. While many other animals can regenerate their tissues, the axolotl is unique since it can restore virtually anything in its body, such as limbs, tail, heart, lungs, eyes, spinal cord, and up to half of its brain. Now, scientists from the University of Kentucky have finally managed to decode the complete axolotl genome, which is the key to human tissue regeneration, as the researcher said.
“The axolotl genome is ten times larger than the human genome and is divided into 14 chromosomes. Think of it as a huge picture puzzle board, where the ultimate aim is to create 14 big pictures from the individual pieces of the puzzle,” said Prayag Murawala from the Research Institute of Molecular Pathology in Vienna for Gizmodo.
Complete Axolotl Genome It’s Essential To Future Human Tissue Regeneration
“Building blocks of those 14 puzzles can be obtained by various sequencing technologies. However, the sequencing results do not tell you where each building block belongs,” the researcher added, cited by Gizmodo.
Now, luckily, the researchers from the University of Kentucky managed to recreate the complete axolotl genome. “We did this using one of the most fundamental concepts in genetics – linkage mapping. If you find that pieces of DNA tend to be inherited together, then they must map near each other,” said Randal Voss, the study’s co-author.
“We need all of the data to begin to understand how salamanders are able to regenerate tissue. The DOD (US Department of Defense) is interested in sustaining the axolotl for regenerative medicine research given its promise to reveal regenerative repair therapies for finger and hand injuries in battle. That promise is now realized with a complete genome assembly,” Randal Voss added, admitting the significance of the complete axolotl genome in the future human tissue regeneration techniques.
Vadim is a passionate writer on various topics but especially on stuff related to health, technology, and science. Therefore, for Great Lakes Ledger, Vadim will cover health and Sci&Tech news.