Aug 2016 Science World Report , Irish Examiner and Journal of Experimental Biology

Sea anemones use vibration-sensitive hair cells covering their tentacles to detect passing prey.The creatures are known to possess a miraculous ability to replace lost tissue. They can even rebuild themselves after tearing in half during asexual reproduction. The team regenerates the tiny hair-like cells of the sea anemones, which are similar to the sound-sensing hair cells in humans.The scientists extracted proteins from mucus-coating sea anemone bodies that appeared to hold the key to their regenerative powers.


In laboratory experiments, a cocktail of their proteins triggered rapid recovery of damaged cochlear hair cells. They also repair the sound-sensing cells in mice and other mammals. Lead researcher Dr Glen Watson, from the University of Louisiana at Lafayette, US, said: “It occurred to me that if any animal could recover from damage to its hair bundles, anemones would be the ones.”