(NEWSER) – Japanese researchers have successfully awakened a microscopic tardigrade (more colloquially known as a waterbear) after it spent three decades in a subzero slumber, the Telegraph reports.
That's a new record; previous Antarctic specimens were revived after about eight years, per the study, published last month in Cryobiology . In November 1983, moss samples were collected during a Japanese Antarctic expedition and stored at -4 degrees Fahrenheit. In March 2014, researchers thawed the specimens and found two tardigrades whose bodies were not fully extended, extension being a mark of tardigrade death. They were dubbed Sleeping Beauty-1 and Sleeping Beauty-2; an extracted egg was called Sleeping Beauty-3. SB-2 died after 20 days—but the other made a total recovery and the once-frozen egg hatched.
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