Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Heat Seeking Vampire Bats!

Heat Seeking Vampire Bats!

Infrared sensors are used by vampire bats to detect where the blood flows closest to their prey's skin. The Common Vampire Bat Desmodus rotundus use heat-sensitive nerves in their upper lip and nose detect blood up to 20cm under their prey's flesh to enable them to feed more efficiently. Researchers have been able to pinpoint the molecule responsible as heat-sensitive TRPV1, a protein that helps animals detect dangerously high temperatures (those over 43 degrees C), but in the bats, some TRPV1 molecules have been mutated to be sensitive to lower temperatures, around 30 degrees C. So probably wise to make sure your garlic garland is kept well chilled!


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