Bizarre origins of a star among noses

日期:2019-03-07 11:17:10 作者:是仫 阅读:

THE snout of the star-nosed mole develops unlike the appendage of any other animal, biologists in Tennessee and California have found. Insect wings, sea urchin spines and the legs of horses are all thought to develop in the same way, as outgrowths of the body wall controlled by similar genes. But Ken Catania of Vanderbilt University in Nashville, Tennessee, and his colleagues found that the 22 tentacles that make up the mole’s nose originate from swellings on the side of the face that detach and bend forward (The Journal of Experimental Biology, vol 202, p 2719). “They basically unfold just like opening a penknife,” says Catania. The tentacles of the animals’ snouts confer an amazing sense of touch. “Their nose acts almost like a tactile eye,