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Don't Hold Your Breath: Carp Can Manage Without Oxygen For Months

Date:
April 7, 2006
Source:
Society for Experimental Biology
Summary:
How long can you hold your breath? Professor Goran Nilsson from the University of Oslo will report how the Crucian Carp, a close relative of the goldfish, is able to live for months without oxygen and how research such as this could give clues as to how to solve this problem in humans.

How long can you hold your breath? Scientists at the University of Oslo have recently discovered how the Crucian Carp, a close relative of the goldfish, is able to live for months without oxygen. The researchers hope that understanding how some animals cope with a lack of oxygen might give clues as to how to solve this problem in humans.

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"Anoxia related diseases are the major causes of death in the industrialized world. We have here a situation where evolution has solved the problem of anoxic survival millions of years ago, something that medical science has struggled with for decades with limited success", says Professor Gφran Nilsson who will be presenting his latest results at the Annual Meeting for the Society for Experimental Biology on Friday 7th April [session A9].

The researchers have found that this extraordinary fish can change the structure of its gills to avoid becoming anoxic. In addition its blood has a much higher affinity for oxygen than any other vertebrate, and it makes tranquilizers and produces alcohol when oxygen supplies are limited. These mechanisms allow the fish to survive for days or even months without oxygen depending on the temperature, whilst still maintaining physical activity.


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The above story is based on materials provided by Society for Experimental Biology. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Society for Experimental Biology. "Don't Hold Your Breath: Carp Can Manage Without Oxygen For Months." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 7 April 2006. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2006/04/060407150832.htm>.
Society for Experimental Biology. (2006, April 7). Don't Hold Your Breath: Carp Can Manage Without Oxygen For Months. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 30, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2006/04/060407150832.htm
Society for Experimental Biology. "Don't Hold Your Breath: Carp Can Manage Without Oxygen For Months." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2006/04/060407150832.htm (accessed October 30, 2014).

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