Sci­en­tists con­clude Oc­to­pus DNA is not from THIS world

Cebu Libre - - NEWS -

THE oceans of our planet hide count­less mys­ter­ies that could per­haps help an­swer nu­mer­ous mys­ter­ies of life it­self. Dur­ing the last cou­ple of decades, ma­rine bi­ol­o­gists have made small but steady progress to­wards a deeper un­der­stand­ing of na­ture and life.

A group of re­searchers de­cided to do some science and chose the cephalopods in or­der to try and break down their DNA code, hop­ing to un­der­stand them bet­ter.

The oc­to­pus, squid, and cut­tle­fish are in­te­grated into the coleoid sub-class of the mol­luscs. They have an evo­lu­tion­ary his­tory that goes back over 500 mil­lion years, a pe­riod long be­fore plants moved onto land. Th­ese crea­tures in­habit nearly ev­ery sin­gle ocean at al­most any depth.

They pos­sess highly de­vel­oped brains and are con­sid­ered as the most in­tel­li­gent in­ver­te­brate demon­strat­ing elab­o­rate prob­lem-solv­ing be­hav­iours. And if it wasn’t freaky enough for oc­to­puses to open up jam jars, sci­en­tists have just con­cluded that th­ese aquatic crea­tures are even more mys­te­ri­ous.

Thanks to the first- ever full genome se­quence, re­searchers have found that oc­to­puses (not oc­topi) are in fact en­tirely dif­fer­ent from any other an­i­mals on our planet. Their genome shows a never-be­fore-seen level of com­plex­ity with a stag­ger­ing 33,000 pro­tein-cod­ing genes iden­ti­fied, more than in a hu­man be­ing.

US re­searcher Dr. Clifton Rags­dale, f rom the Univer­sity of Chicago, said: The oc­to­pus ap­pears to be ut­terly dif­fer­ent from all other an­i­mals, even other mol­luscs, with its eight pre­hen­sile arms, its large brain, and its clever prob­lem-solv­ing abil­i­ties.

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