Regrettably, every animal residing in the Antarctic Ocean faces a distinctive challenge of surviving in the below zero temperature.
According to the researchers, there are numerous species of Antarctic Notothenioid fish, who manage to survive in below zero temperature by producing a special protein alike to anti-freeze. This protein keeps the ice pieces present within the Antarctic notothenioid fish from getting bigger. Though, these proteins have an unintentional effect that might be injurious to the fish. It also keeps the ice from melting.
The group researchers have found that, when the anti-freeze proteins attaches to the ice piece, either within the fish or in water, it keeps ice from melting even when the ice would be heated beyond its melting point. The researchers called this Ice, which remains solid on heating as “Superheated Ice”. Moreover, the researchers claimed that this is the first time; we have discovered the superheated ice in nature.
This study is conducted with the mutual teamwork of the researchers from University of Oregon and Illinois University. Paul Cziko along with his fellow colleagues spent almost 2-years in studying the Antarctic Fish like Antarctic tooth-fish in order to get the answers of how fishes survive at below zero temperature. They further told that, this feature is only present in Notothenioid fish. Not all fishes have that same anti-freeze protein in them.
Professor Chi-hing Christina Cheng says that, presently we are trying to figure out that how small pieces of ice inside them could cause harm to fish. One of the leaders says that, this ice could be responsible of causing any harm to fish. These pieces of ice might be similar to blood clots in human body, said by Cziko. He also says that, because much of the ice was present in fish’s spleens, so that’s why we think there is a system present which clear the ice from circulation.
Cziko says that our research did not anticipated to have any realistic submission at this point; we are just learning new facts. Antarctic fish are very interesting case, which contains new evolution about the fact that, protein keeps ice within the fish from freezing, averting it from growing inside the fish, but it also prevents the ice from melting, which means there are chances present that this can cause any harm to fish.
Cheng’s team discovered last year that, the antifreeze protein was first discovered 20mn years ago. From this we analyze that, fish develop that aptitude to stay alive for a while, after the Antarctic froze over. The researchers took the DNA of Antarctic tooth-fish and compared it with DNA of genetically same fish which did not live in Antarctic, Eleginops maclovinus, to garner what it could about the fish’s alteration.