Spider beating heart image via MRI captured by British researchers (Video)

By on Jul 2, 2011 in Amazing, Animals, Europe, Science Comments

An image of a spider’s beating heart was recently captured by researchers via MRI or Magnetic Resonance Imaging, as shown in the video below.

Spider beating heart image via MRI
Image Credit: Gavin Merrifield/LiveScience.com

As reported at Live Science on Thursday, June 30, 2011, British researchers captured a real-time heart beating of a spider via MRI for the first time ever.

“The MRI image reveals how blood moves through the tarantula’s heart.” UK’s University of Edinburgh study researcher Gavin Merrifield was quoted on the report, who is also doctoral candidate.

“Tantalizingly, it looks as though there might be ‘double beating’ occurring, a distinct type of contraction which has never been considered before,” Merrifield added.

Apparently, the MRI was said to have allowed researchers to calculate the insect’s heart rate and cardiac output or how much blood the spider’s heart pumps per beat, which is part of their ongoing study of tarantula biology.

“One potential practical use of this research is to ascertain the chemical composition of spider venom.” Merrifield explained, noting that venom is applicable in agriculture as a potential natural pesticide.

Spider beating heart image via MRI
Video Credit: Gavin Merrifield/LiveScience.com

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