Rats induced into hibernation-like state

Injection of compound causes animals to slow heartbeat, lower body temperature

By Laura Sanders, 14:54 PM September 20, 2013

Rats spent hours in a state of chilly suspended animation after researchers injected a compound into the animals in a cold room.  The animals’ heart rates slowed, brain activity became sluggish and body temperature plummeted.

The research joins a small number of studies that attempt to induce the metabolically lethargic state known as torpor in animals that can’t normally slow their metabolism. “It’s a breakthrough” in understanding aspects of torpor, says neuroscientist Kelly Drew of the Univ...

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