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Scientists: Life at the Cellular Level Continues After Death

Scientists: Life at the Cellular Level Continues After Death

(AP)

By    |   Thursday, 26 January 2017 06:02 PM

New research suggests that cells within human bodies fight for life and try to survive as they attempt to repair themselves after death.

The results of a study published in the journal Open Biology show that portions of the body live on even after death has occurred.

"Not all cells are 'dead' when an organism dies," the study's senior author Peter Noble told science website Seeker. "Different cell types have different life spans, generation times, and resilience to extreme stress. It is likely that some cells remain alive and are attempting to repair themselves, specifically stem cells."

The scientists in the study looked at zebrafish and mice, but they concluded that humans also display the phenomenon. The science behind it is called gene expression, which essentially means that information buried within DNA turns into directions for making proteins or other DNA molecules. The study found that in some cases, gene expression increases after death.

The first step of gene expression is gene transcription, which can take place up to several days after death occurs, the researchers found.

"Death is a time-dependent process," Noble told Seeker. "We have framed our discussion of death in reference to 'postmortem time' because on the one hand, there is no reason to suspect that minutes after an animal dies, gene transcription will abruptly stop."

The scientists are now wondering whether death can eventually be altered or even pushed back because of the information they have learned.

Scientists in California, meanwhile, have used lab-made DNA to create a life form for the first time in history. They used common E. coli microbes in the process.

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New research suggests that cells within human bodies fight for life and try to survive as they attempt to repair themselves after death.
cell, life, continues, after, death
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2017-02-26
Thursday, 26 January 2017 06:02 PM
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