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Glowing Fish: Small creatures play big roles in animal experimentation

 
And now we'll take a look at a couple of fascinating creatures that Korean scientists are using in their research.
 
As Park Se-young reports,... the unique properties of a particular type of fish and a worm... allow them to be treated humanely... and allow for an extremely versatile range of experiments.
 
When this water tank is exposed to light from LEDs, the fish inside the tank glow bright red.
A Korean university lab genetically modified rice-fish to emit neon light in reaction to hormones in the underwater environment.
 
The fish can also lay up to 30 eggs a day, so they can be used for many kinds of experiments.
"They can detect pollutants in both seawater and fresh water. Since they grow to be less than 5 centimeters long, we can grow a lot of them within our limited space."
 
These one-millimeter-long creatures are a type of roundworm whose genes have been fully decoded.
 
glowingfish
 
Since their genes share similarities with those of humans, the worms are often used for the study of aging and analysis of the nervous system.
"They're one of the most common animal models for recent studies in neurobiology. Because of their transparent bodies, their neurological activity can be studied while they're still alive."
 
These small but strong creatures are contributing greatly to the foundations of biology.
 

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