Thursday, 4 June 2020

Horseshoe Crab: Whose Blue Blood Can Save Your Life



What many people in the world may not know is that their health may depend on a blue-blooded crab that looks like a spider and a scorpion.

The Horseshoe Crab is one of the oldest living creatures in the world. These crabs, which have existed on Earth for at least 450 million years, are even older than dinosaurs.

The 'Atlantic Horseshoe' crabs can be seen from spring to full moon nights between May and June when the waves are at their peak.

In this case, we are fortunate that this crab is still found in the Atlantic Ocean and the Indian Ocean and has saved millions of lives so far.

Use of blue blood

Scientists have been checking the cleanliness of medical equipment with the help of this crab's blood since 1970. The presence of dangerous bacteria on the medical equipment used in the operation can kill the patient but the blood of this crab indicates the bacteria.

Crab blue blood is also used when implants are being made inside the human body. This blood is helpful in testing whether these devices are bactericidal. These include devices used in vaccinations against HIV and many other vaccines.

A big business?

According to the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission, about 50 million Atlantic Horseshoe crabs are caught each year for medical purposes. The blood of these crabs is one of the most expensive fluids in the world. A liter of blood from these crabs costs up to ہزار 15,000.

Scientists say that due to global warming, these crabs do not have a suitable environment for laying eggs and flourishing.

Why is blood blue?

The blue blood of this crab is due to the presence of copper in this blood. In contrast, the presence of iron in human blood is high, which makes human blood red.

But scientists are not interested in the insect because it is blue in color, but because it contains a specific chemical in the blood that accumulates around the bacteria and binds it. This blood can identify bacteria.

What happens to crabs after they die?

About 30% of a shrimp's blood is drawn after a hole is drilled in its back near its heart. The crab is then released back into the sea.

But scientists say 10 to 30 percent of crabs die during this process. The surviving female crabs then have difficulty reproducing or reproducing.

There are currently four species of Horseshoe crabs left in the world.

All four species are rapidly becoming extinct due to overuse in the medical field and being caught as fish food. One of the main reasons for its demise is climate change.

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