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Chernobyl's Wolves develop unique cancer-fighting traits, Paving the way for scientific breakthroughs

In an intriguing revelation, wolves near the Chernobyl plant in Ukraine have shown they can fight cancer. Scientists are finding out how these wolves developed special abilities. This discovery could help us understand more about cancer and how to beat it.

Chernobyl's Wolves develop unique cancer-fighting traits, Paving the way for scientific breakthroughs avv
First Published Feb 9, 2024, 5:44 PM IST

Chernobyl is one of the least inhabited places in the world due to the tragic nuclear power plant accident in 1986. The tragedy led to the instant, painful deaths of many due to excessive radiation. A 1,000 square mile (2,590 square kilometres) area is marked and nobody is allowed to visit due to the radiation still dominating the environment there.

A group of researchers was allowed to conduct research in the Chernobyl Exclusion Zone (CEZ) with appropriate measures. Humans left the CEZ area en masse and never returned but animals have been consistently staying in the risk zone. The group of researchers conducted their research on Wolves that lived in the radiated region.

Blood samples were collected of the animal species and analyzed in Shane Campbell-Staton's lab at Princeton University. Cara Love, the evolutionary biologist and ecotoxicologist who has led the intriguing research, has been involved in the project for nine years now. She presented the findings at the annual meeting of the Society of Integrative and Comparative Biology's Annual Meeting in the US.

The findings showcased that the Wolves residing in the cordoned-off Chernobyl Exclusion Zone had developed remarkable cancer-fighting abilities. This is despite the Wolves being exposed to 11.28 millirem of radiation daily which is 6 times greater than the legal safety limit for human beings.

The remarkable findings surprised almost all as the cancer fighting abilities are very less in human beings. Dogs living in the Chernobyl Exclusion Zone had also developed such fighting abilities. The research is being analyzed thoroughly to help humans develop such cancer-fighting abilities that could define the human race in the future.

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