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Crystal Jellyfish Lend a Hand to Medical Field

The Scoop: Jellyfish Help Research Team Win Nobel Prize

If you've ever wondered how some jellyfish glow green, you're not alone. Three researchers from across the country – Osamu Shimomura, Martin Chalfie, and Roger Tsien – teamed up to discover ways to produce the protein unique to Crystal Jellyfish – called GFP – to help aid in medical research. The discovery was so important that it earned them the Nobel Prize for Chemistry.

How would this glowing protein aid the medical community? Formally, certain things have been invisible to the eye – like how cancer cells form and spread – but with this fluorescent protein, we can now see those cells and watch how they develop. What's more, researchers can also see how nerve cells deteriorate as they do in patients with Alzheimer's, which means that a deeper understanding of the disease is possible! Hopefully, this will help form a cure for both cases, and open up a whole new understanding for other medical related issues. Way to go jellyfish!

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Join The Conversation
ladyr ladyr 7 years
Awesome discovery! OMG, I was at the beach with my dogs last week, and one of them licked a huge jellyfish! I looked over at my pooch, saw the jelly he was sniffing, but it was too late to stop him before he decided to give it a taste. Luckily he only licked the top, so he wasn't stung.
itsme3683 itsme3683 7 years
Unrelated, but OMG I am so afraid of Jellyfish I could cry. I think it has something to do with my having seen Sphere at a very early age. Is that weird?
hyzenthlay20 hyzenthlay20 7 years
The discovery of GFP (and the alterations to make the other FPs) really revolutionized biologists abilities to see cell processes. When I read this yesterday, I was so excited! These scientists absolutely deserve the Nobel Prize for this discovery!
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