Scientists claimed that a process unknown to science is causing a shark to glow when hit by sunlight. According to Science Mag, a shark called "chain catshark," a shy type underwater predator spends most of its time lying on the seafloor. Amazingly, it can emit green light, which looks like a flashy outfit.
atlasobscura: These sharks might look grey to us, but they're glowing a biofluorescent green … pic.twitter.com/xz97yJHf1s — tech-elem (@EasyITCommunity) June 8, 2016
The chain catshark and the "swell shark" are the only ones that can give off a green glow when exposed to light. The study allowed the researchers to track down the source of the sea creature's fluorescence, which they claimed is caused by a process they have never seen before.
To find the proteins in the shark's cells and even create glow-in-the-dark cats, the scientists used the proteins of glowing jellyfish, which are the most well-known fluorescent sea animals that produce brilliant blue and green lights. Another report explained how the glowing cats were modified.
The scientists infected the feline's egg cells with a virus containing a foreign gene. It is the first time the process has worked in a predatory animal. The researchers claimed that the study's results could make the cat a valuable new genetic model, which could protect the animal from an HIV-like virus or disease.
What the scientists found in the shark's skin were not proteins
The researchers were surprised after they extracted all the compounds from the shark's piece of skin. They discovered that the animal's glowing compounds were not proteins, but rather a breakdown of an amino acid tryptophan's unusual form.
I just found out about glowing sharks and immediately thought about glowy shark Keef, but instead of glowing green he'd glow purple #keithkogane pic.twitter.com/0KtnxlSwXf — Møchï (@dramatic_fox09) September 2, 2019
Most of the tryptophan is responsible for creating the animal's proteins. However, some of these amino acids are converted into a compound called kynurenine, a building block for a vitamin called niacin that is involved with inflammation, depression, diabetes, and even cancer.
The shark's green glow is caused by when the element bromine's atom combines with the kynurenine. When the sea creature is exposed to the blue light below the ocean's floor, it will start emitting the green light.
Chain catsharks usually ambush their prey, such as octopuses and other sea creatures, by lying on the seabed. Their green light allows them to distinguish other shark species, as well as recognize potential mates. It may also protect the animal from disease by killing bacteria.
For more interesting animal studies, always keep your tabs open here at TechTimes.
This article is owned by TechTimes,
Written by: Giuliano de Leon.