Scientists modified a single gene for zebrafish so that the beak could not be closed.

According tomedia reports, a study published this week showed that scientists carried out an experiment with the aim of mutation. In the experiment, the scientists altered a single gene for zebrafish and recorded the results. Their aim is to study the evolution of the jaw. They created a fish with cartilage fusion in the upper and lower jaws, making its mouth unable to close.

Scientists modified a single gene for zebrafish so that the beak could not be closed.

“Developmental Plasticity” is the name of the phenomenon described in a study led by Paleontologist Tetsuto Miyashita, a paleontologist at the Canadian Museum of Nature. “We generally think that evolution adds something new,” Dr. Miyashita said, according to Psys.org. For example, 450 million years ago, fish evolved their first jaw, giving them an ultimate competitive advantage over other organisms. “

“Today, without our chin, we would starve and suffocate,” Dr. Miyashita said. “But sometimes evolution does the opposite. Take away what has existed for millions of years, and it will suddenly open up a new evolutionary direction. My idea is to see it in action. “

Miyashita’s team includes researchers and scientists from the University of Southern California and the University of Alberta. In their work, the researchers designed two separate jaw joint marker genes in zebrafish, the empty alleles of the gene nkx3.2. As these genes change, what they call “nkx3.2 mutants” become “functional jaws” after the upper and lower jaw cartilage fusion.

Scientists modified a single gene for zebrafish so that the beak could not be closed.

The researchers noted that although the fish’s mouths could not move, some of them lived to adulthood. This is due to the adaptation of defects to two important points:

(a) There is a remodeled skull, with a fixed open mouth, defective mouth and expanded area of the gills.

(b) Feeding without the suction of the jaw.

The study was published this week in the Journal of Experimental Biology.