​Scientists engineer worms to live the equivalent of 500 human years

In an experiment that even caught the researchers by surprise, nematode worms had their lifespans increased by — get this — five times. By tweaking two longevity-related genes, the researchers created an unexpected feedback effect that radically amplified lifespan. The technique could eventually be used to treat… » 12/16/13 2:20pm 12/16/13 2:20pm

Will nematodes conquer space before humans?

Caenorhabditis elegans is a a less-than-one-millimeter-long nematode that matures and dutifully produces its next generation in space the same way it does on earth. C. elegans' biology shares certain important commonalities with that of humans. Therefore, University of Nottingham researchers are arguing that these… » 11/30/11 8:25am 11/30/11 8:25am

Meet the Tardigrades: The Solar System's Most Extreme Survivors

There is an organism living on this planet who can travel through space without a suit. Cute, unassuming little invertebrates, these organisms are called tardigrades, or water bears, and usually spend their days crawling around on a piece of nice wet moss in a forest, or meandering through our vast oceans. They only… » 7/10/08 9:41am 7/10/08 9:41am