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How the tadpole could save your life

Posted Feb 04 2009 12:38am

Tadpoles, you remember them the little things that eventually grow up and turn into frogs. You studies them in elementary school science to learn about the life cycle. Well tadpoles may be the key to stopping skin cancer. Researchers at the University of East Anglia have found a new compound that stops the progression of pigmented cells that make a frog look like a frog.

It turns out that the same pigment cells in humans and tadpole, when they grow uncontrolled cause melanoma, a very dangerous form of skin cancer. If these cells can be blocked in humans the development and spread of cancerous tumors can potentially be prevented.

I know, you're thinking "Well, that would be great if I was a tadpole" but check this out. All these years of making jokes about "the rabbit died" actually over looks the fact that as far back as the 1930's doctors could determine pregnancy with the help of frogs. Turns out that if you inject the urine of a woman into a frog, the frog will lay eggs within 24 hours if the woman is pregnant. If you would like to read the article it is available for free in the journal Chemistry and Biology

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