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Latest Tunicate Stories

Tunicate Marine Animal Could Be Next Biofuel
2013-03-25 18:51:02

Lee Rannals for redOrbit.com — Your Universe Online Scientists are looking to the ocean for the next big thing in renewable sources of biofuel for your eco-car. Five researchers at the University of Bergen (UiB) and Uni Research say they found the marine animal tunicate could be used as a renewable source of biofuel. These marine animals serve as bacteria eaters and as a foodstuff in Korea and Japan right now, but the cellulose, the protein and the Omega-3 fatty acids in tunicate are...

2012-03-14 22:03:04

In a brainless marine worm, MBL researchers find the developmental 'scaffold' for the vertebrate brain The origin of the exquisitely complex vertebrate brain is somewhat mysterious. "In terms of evolution, it basically pops up out of nowhere. You don't see anything anatomically like it in other animals," says Ariel Pani, an investigator at the Marine Biological Laboratory (MBL) in Woods Hole and a graduate student at the University of Chicago. But this week in the journal Nature, Pani...

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2011-04-17 07:29:20

Studies of the small sea squirt may ultimately help solve the problem of rejection of organ and bone marrow transplants in humans, according to scientists at UC Santa Barbara. An average of 20 registered patients die every day waiting for transplants, due to the shortage of matching donor organs. More than 110,000 people are currently waiting for organ transplants in the U.S. alone. Currently, only one in 20,000 donors are a match for a patient waiting for a transplant. These grim statistics...

2011-03-11 16:00:09

Nanoscale whiskers from sea creatures could grow human muscle tissue Minute whiskers of nanoscale dimensions taken from sea creatures could hold the key to creating working human muscle tissue, University of Manchester researchers have discovered. Scientists have found that cellulose from tunicates, commonly known as sea squirts, can influence the behavior of skeletal muscle cells in the laboratory. These nanostructures are several thousand times smaller than muscle cells and are the smallest...

2010-07-30 16:10:33

Discovery of an evolutionary trait from our earliest ancestors could provide insight into the early development of human embryos Using the model organism Ciona intestinalis, commonly known as the sea squirt, researchers at the University of California, Berkeley, have uncovered the origins of the second heart field in vertebrates. Sea squirts are bag-like gelatinous creatures whose full genome has been sequenced--one that shares 80 percent of its genes with humans. Though its body is clearly...

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2010-05-14 07:35:31

An aggressive, invasive aquatic organism that is on the state's most dangerous species list has been discovered in both Winchester Bay and Coos Bay, and scientists say this "colonial tunicate" "“ Didemnum vexillum "“ has serious economic and environmental implications. Its propensity to foul surfaces of boats, fishing nets, water intakes, docks and buoys could make it costly to control, and its ability to smother shellfish beds and sensitive marine environments threatens other...

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2008-06-19 10:20:00

Ancestor to all chordates, including the vertebrates, confirms 40-year-old theory The newly sequenced genome of a dainty, quill-like sea creature called a lancelet provides the best evidence yet that vertebrates evolved over the past 550 million years through a four-fold duplication of the genes of more primitive ancestors. The late geneticist Susumu Ohno argued in 1970 that gene duplication was the most important force in the evolution of higher organisms, and Ohno's theory was the basis for...

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2006-11-06 15:26:43

Genetic analysis of an obscure, worm-like creature retrieved from the depths of the North Atlantic has led to the discovery of a new phylum, a rare event in an era when most organisms have already been grouped into major evolutionary categories. The analysis also appears to shed light on the ancestor of chordates, the backboned animals that include human beings and two small invertebrate groups closely related to one another: lancelets and tunicates. Its a tremendous surprise that this...

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2006-05-25 08:07:58

GROTON, Conn. (AP) - A blob-like creature is invading Long Island Sound and posing a threat to its lobsters and other shellfish, University of Connecticut scientists say. The researchers say they have found colonies of invasive sea squirts, blob-shaped animals that reproduce easily, on the floor of the sound. They believe this variety of sea squirt, known as didemnum, arrived on the hulls of ships from Asia. They have no known predators. "This thing has the potential for causing...

2005-11-23 13:30:46

STANFORD, Calif. - "You can eat your relatives but not your friends," could be the off-kilter credo of a tiny marine invertebrate called a sea squirt that can physically merge with, and parasitize, its own kin. The trigger for this unseemly behavior has now been traced to a single gene, isolated by researchers at the Stanford University School of Medicine. That gene also points to a common origin with the vertebrate immune system, far back in animal evolution, potentially shedding light on...


Latest Tunicate Reference Libraries

Vase Tunicate, Ciona intestinalis
2014-01-12 00:00:00

The Vase Tunicate (Ciona intestinalis) is a species of sea squirt widely distributed in Northern European waters. It has also spread to other parts of the world, where it is considered invasive. It grows in dense aggregations on any floating or submerged substrate, especially on artificial structures like pilings, aquaculture gear, floats and boat hulls. It is found in the lower intertidal and subtidal zones. Sea squirts have been long recognized as being possibly the closest invertebrate...

Sea Pineapple, Halocynthia roretzi
2014-01-12 00:00:00

The Sea Pineapple (Halocynthia roretzi) is an edible species of tunicate. It is known as the Meongge in Korea and the Hoya or Maboya in Japan. This creature lives in shallow water, usually attached to rocks and artificial substrate. It is adapted to cold water temperatures between 36 and 75 degrees Fahrenheit, but prefer temperatures close to 54 degrees F. This creature is known for both its peculiar appearance, described by journalist Nick Tosches as “something that could exist only in...

Phallusia nigra
2014-01-12 00:00:00

Phallusia nigra is a species of sea squirt (tunicate) found in tropical seas around the world. It is usually found in shallow waters attached to any hard substrate. It is a solitary animal rather than living in colonies. Although the native range of this animal is unknown, the tropical western Atlantic Ocean, the Red Sea and the Indian Ocean are possibilities. Like all ascidians, this species has a thick leathery envelope (tunic) containing cellulosic material. The tunic encloses a...

Painted Tunicate, Clavelina picta
2014-01-12 00:00:00

The Painted Tunicate (Clavelina picta) is a species of sea squirt (tunicate) in the genus Clavelina (known as “little bottles.”). It is found in the waters of Florida, the Bahamas, and the Caribbean. It often occurs in large clusters attached to black coral, sponges, and gorgonians. Colonies may contain hundreds of individuals. This animal, like all ascidians, is a sessile filter feeder. It is about 0.75 inches long and comes in a variety of colors, including reds, purples and yellows....

Red-sea Squirt, Halocyntia papillosa
2014-01-12 00:00:00

The Red-sea Squirt (Halocyntia papillosa) is a species of sea squirt (tunicate) that are sometimes referred to as sea peaches. It is found in the Northeast Atlantic and Western Pacific oceans, along the Portuguese coast and in the Mediterranean Sea. It attaches itself to rocks and overhangs and occurs at depths of 6 to 325 feet. The Red-sea Squirt is generally about 4 inches high, but can reach maximum lengths of 8 inches. It contracts when disturbed. It is ovoid in form with a granulous...

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Word of the Day
lunula
  • A small crescent-shaped structure or marking, especially the white area at the base of a fingernail that resembles a half-moon.
This word is a diminutive of the Latin 'luna,' moon.
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