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I am a human, so if my limbs fall off, they stay off. This is unfortunate. It's also why Australian scientists are working to enable "salamander-like" limb repair in people. A new study published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences offers new insights into how salamanders self-repair, and holds clues as to how humans might learn from their example.
Salamanders, you see, are one of the few vertebrates with full-fledged regenerative capabilities: they can repair their hearts, brains, and spines, and they regrow entire limbs. What makes all that regeneration possible are cells called macrophages. These cells not only kill off invasive bacteria and fungi, study author Dr. James Godwin, of the Australian Regenerative Medicine Institute at Monash University, tells ABC Australia, they "actively determine repair."
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