[Biology and Species] New study on female octopus senescence

octobot

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A new study uses modern genetic sequencing tools to describe several distinct molecular signals produced by the optic gland after a female octopus reproduces. The research also details four separate phases of maternal behavior and links them to these signals, suggesting how the optic gland controls a mother octopus' demise.

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octobot

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Octopuses are the undisputed darlings of the science internet, and for good reason. They're incredibly intelligent problem-solvers and devious escape artists with large, complex nervous systems. They have near-magical abilities to change colors, skin textures and shapes instantaneously, and they can regenerate missing arms at will.

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Maggie

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"In 1977, Brandeis University psychologist Jerome Wodinsky... removed the optic gland from female Caribbean two-spot octopuses... Without them, the female octopuses abandoned their eggs, resumed feeding, and some even mated again." Read more at: The grim, final days of a mother octopus

Does this mean he effectively can extend their lives??? By how long??? The mind boggles!!!
 

DWhatley

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Does this mean he effectively can extend their lives??? By how long??? The mind boggles!!!
@Maggie, yes removing the optic gland (when successful, ie it is a delicate operation) has extended the lifespan by inhibiting maturation. Unfortunately, the full article is now behind a paywall but here is an excerpt from the Hormonal Inhibition of Feeding and Death in Octopus: Control by Optic Gland Secretion 1977 study (you will need to magnify your viewing screen to read it).
 

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