Ancient Bacteria That Could Make Humans Immortal Discovered
Do ancient bacteria hold the key to eternal life? Russian researchers think so.
According to Daily Mail, a 3.5-million-year-old bacterium called Bacillus F makes biologically active compounds all its life to defy death. The bacteria's DNA has been used to test if its vitality can be replicated in human red blood cells and mice by Russian researchers. The results are said to be encouraging.
The bacterium was found embedded in permafrost in 2009 in Siberia. Though researchers do not know how it manages to survive and lend its vitality, they believe the biological compounds given out by the microorganism activated immune status in experimental animals. For instance, aged female mice were able to reproduce again besides regaining nimble movement.
The report also mentions other ancient bacteria that could be modified for human benefit. One bacterium found in permafrost has the ability to wipe clean petroleum and could be potentially used to clear oil-spills, while another can eliminate cellulose molecules.
Researchers underscored the importance of understanding how these bacteria function before they could be put to use.
"The key question is what provides the vitality of this bacterium, but it is as complicated as which human genes are responsible for cancer and how to cure it. The scale and complicity of the question are nearly the same," Dr. Anatoli Brouchkov, who discovered Bacillus F.