The immortal life form seems to be an impossible or impossible thing for humanity, but on our planet this life form already exists, moreover it can do it comfortably, without limit of number of times.
In the summer of 1988, Christian Sommer, a 20-year-old German marine biology student, traveled to the small town of Rapallo in Liguria, Italy, to travel with his girlfriend. It was there that the famous German philosopher Nietzsche wrote “So Zarathustra” – “Thus Said Zarathustra”, and during this tour, the young German accidentally discovered an incredible secret about life on Earth.
Christian Sommer is an extremely hardworking student, so even on vacation with his girlfriend this guy doesn’t neglect his studies. For his studies, he dived in the blue waters under the cliffs of Portofino to learn about the marine life here and found a small jellyfish – Turritopsis nutricula (lighthouse jellyfish).
This jellyfish is only four to five mm, its whole body is transparent, in the middle of its body is a digestive system red like a lamp, so it is called a flagship jellyfish.
Although the flagship jellyfish look very nice, due to their small size, people often don’t see or notice them. Immediately after observing and discovering, Sommer collected them in a fine mesh bag and placed them in a container of seawater in the hopes of bringing them to the refrigerator and turning them into specimens. But that day was the weekend, on the beach there were a lot of interesting games and because of a little game, Christian Sommer forgot to put them in the fridge as originally planned.
It was only the next day that Christian Sommer remembered what he had forgotten. When he found the barrel, he pulled it out to look, but when he looked closely several times, Sommer found nothing inside the mesh bag other than sea water.
So what happened? Even though the flagship jellyfish are so small that they can still be seen with the naked eye, why do they disappear completely in one?
Still not believing his eyes, Sommer checked the container several times, this time feeling even more surprised, at the bottom of the container there were a lot of little things, almost invisible. After much observation and analysis, Sommer realized that these are exactly the polyps of the flagship jellyfish.
Why did Sommer feel so surprised? In fact, flagship jellyfish are a species of hydrophyte, and they have two different stages of development in their life cycle: a polyp (hydroid) stage and a jellyfish stage of development. Adult jellyfish lay eggs and are fertilized in water, after which they hold the fertilized eggs in the female jellyfish until they develop into planula larvae.
These planula larvae can swim freely like worms or float in the sea, then sink to the bottom of the sea to form a digestive system and reproduce asexually in polyps; After the budding of asexual reproduction, the polyps slowly develop into adult jellyfish and begin a new life cycle.
Usually, the life cycle of jellyfish lasts several weeks to several months, and they die after spawning. But now the fact that these jellyfish lay eggs, fertilize themselves, become larvae, ripen and then turn into polyps within a few days is what makes Sommer extremely surprised.
This means that these jellyfish have not disappeared, but are rejuvenated as a rejuvenation in its own right. Further research has shown that not all flagship jellyfish are getting younger, their life cycle will still run normally. However, in the face of some unfavorable conditions such as food shortage, changes in water temperature, decreased salinity of seawater or physical damage and many other adversities, they will fend for themselves, themselves. will transform into polyps and start their life cycle anew.
Theoretically, the lighthouse jellyfish can reverse its life cycle continuously without limit of times, so we can say that the lighthouse jellyfish is an immortal life form and also the only species in the world that can such a life mechanism.
Moreover, each time this rejuvenation process is performed, the flagship jellyfish can split into hundreds of different polyps, which means that the current flagship jellyfish have “aged” a lot, may even exceed several thousand years. Therefore, this species is also considered the longest living organism on the planet, if not completely immortal.
Many people believe that the flagship jellyfish appeared in the Cretaceous period, and if so, the flagship jellyfish in the ocean have lived for over 100 million years.
The flagship jellyfish is actually an invasive species, it is native to the Pacific Ocean and is believed to colonize oceans around the world through ballast water. Due to its small size and not causing too many negative reactions to the ecosystem, few people pay attention to its invasiveness.