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Regulated respite

Life Science

Dragonfly wings have served as inspiration for flexible splints. And it seems we could learn a thing or two from grizzly bears.

Despite consuming up to 20,000 calories per day and hibernating for long periods, the animals are able to regulate their blood sugar levels.

A US research team fed honey water to six hibernating grizzly bears during wake phases.

They then analysed how blood serum drawn from the test bears before and after hibernation and serum from active bears reacted with cell cultures.

They discovered that eight proteins were key in controlling the animals’ insulin levels. The study could help further diabetes treatment.

Purple maize and the world of virtual reality can also play a role.

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