Coelacanth DNA Does Some Weird Stuff!

Posted by: Craig Woolheater on May 13th, 2013


The genome of a primitive fish that was once thought to have died when the dinosaurs did has now been sequenced by scientists — and when put into mice, some of the fish DNA caused mice to sprout limbs.

The new analysis, described today (April 17) in the journal Nature, could help to reveal how primitive fish swapped their fins for limbs when they moved from land to sea.

The fish, called a coelacanth, seems to carry snippets of DNA that can turn on genes that code for forelimbs and hind limbs in mice. The new discovery could shed light on how four-legged creatures, called tetrapods, evolved.

“It really is a cornerstone from which we can view tetrapod evolution,” said study co-author Chris Amemiya, a geneticist at the Benaroya Research Institute in Seattle, Wash.

Read the rest of the article here.

About Craig Woolheater
Co-founder of Cryptomundo in 2005. I have appeared in or contributed to the following TV programs, documentaries and films: OLN's Mysterious Encounters: "Caddo Critter", Southern Fried Bigfoot, Travel Channel's Weird Travels: "Bigfoot", History Channel's MonsterQuest: "Swamp Stalker", The Wild Man of the Navidad, Destination America's Monsters and Mysteries in America: Texas Terror - Lake Worth Monster, Animal Planet's Finding Bigfoot: Return to Boggy Creek and Beast of the Bayou.

6 Responses to “Coelacanth DNA Does Some Weird Stuff!”

  1. Goodfoot responds:

    This may be a good place to point out that MICE ALREADY HAVE LIMBS.

  2. alan borky responds:

    Craig I don’t normally associate you with putting up stuff like this but please don’t hesitate to do it regularly.

    ON switches of course’re also OFF switches so a possible implication of this story’s there may’ve been even more variability in things like sea temperature height etc than hitherto suspected meaning the supposedly rare example of the whale’s ancestor moving on land then returning to the sea may’ve happened many times over to many species perhaps almost from the dawn of life.

  3. corrick responds:

    Didn’t any of these scientist’s see 1958’s “Monster On Campus” starring Troy Donahue???
    There are somethings in nature mankind was not meant to tamper with…like coelacanth blood!

  4. Big Steve responds:

    I wonder if this research could have useful consequences for human amputees and people with birth defects? Wouldn’t it be a marvelous day for genome science if it did! Fingers crossed!

  5. DWA responds:

    Melba Ketchum:

    And all I did was get human DNA off some steaks. Some people just know how to live.

  6. Fhqwhgads responds:

    @Big Steve — I don’t think any of us will live long enough to see that. Lab-grown kidneys or skin is more likely.

Sorry. Comments have been closed.

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