Key to Tardigrades' "Superpowers"
Yes tardigrades are indestructible. In the article, "Key to Tardigrades' 'Superpowers' Identified in Their DNA" the mystery of why tardigrades have survived so long has been discovered. A study revealed special proteins in the tardigrades' DNA is the reason why they are indestructible. Tardigrades or "water bears" live in damp moss and algae and can withstand up to 300 degrees Fahrenheit to as low as -328 degrees Fahrenheit. These amazing creatures survive by expelling the water in their bodies and shrink into a tiny ball until it is safe. The question is, how do they last dried out for so long? Researchers found tardigrade-specific intrinsically disordered proteins (TDPs) which helps them survive. This protein exists only in tardigrades and is activated in life threatening conditions. Since this protein was discovered, scientists are trying to stabilize the protein and use it for pharmaceuticals to help medicine last longer in harsh conditions.