How a Fish Grows Back its Scales

Thursday, January 7, 2021
Tissue velocity field and its divergence

How does a fish grow back scales it has lost to be the exact right size? Why don’t they just keep growing out of control? 

The secret lies in waves of Erk activity. Erks are the signaling protein molecules that cause cells to divide, but also tell them when to stop dividing. 

Researchers from Duke University found that Erks travel in pulsing waves to control how fast and how big the scales grow. Waves help the signals travel further. This discovery could have future implications for regenerative therapy in humans.

Read the article, Control of osteoblast regeneration by a train of Erk activity waves, in Nature