Russian scientists have revived a microscopic animal that slumbered for over 24,000 years in the Arctic permafrost.

Russian scientists have revived a microscopic animal that slumbered for over 24,000 years in the Arctic permafrost. The study, published in the journal Current Biology, revealed that in permanently frozen natural habitats, some organisms may be “preserved for hundreds to tens of thousands of years”. The study also throws light upon microscopic multicellular animals, Bdelloid rotifers’ ability to survive. As per the study, Bdelloid rotifers typically live in watery environments and can survive extremely low temperatures. 
The study has been published in the journal Current Biology. The obligate parthenogenetic bdelloid rotifer was recovered in northeastern Siberia. This is the longest reported case of rotifer survival in a frozen state. According to the new study, the scientists found rotifer that belongs to the genus Adineta and aligns with a contemporary Adineta vaga isolate collected in Belgium. Based on the earlier study, Rotifers had been reported to survive up to 10 years when frozen. However, in the new study, the researchers used radiocarbon dating to determine that the rotifers they recovered from the permafrost were about 24,000 years old. The rotifier once thawed, belonged to the genus Adineta, was able to reproduce in a clonal process known as parthenogenesis. The study showed the rotifers could withstand the formation of ice crystals that happens during slow freezing.
The study suggests that they have some mechanism to shield their cells and organs from harm at exceedingly low temperatures. Scientists have confirmed the finding by identifying rotifer actin gene sequences in a metagenome obtained from the same sample. Stas Malavin, a researcher at the Soil Cryology Laboratory at the Pushchino Scientific Center for Biological Research in Russia said that this report is the proof that multicellular animals could live for tens of thousands of years in cryptobiosis, reported CNN. Malavin further added that a multicellular organism can be frozen and stored for thousands of years and then they can return back to life. 
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