Liver growth in armadillos inflicted with leprosy may provide insights on organ regeneration


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leprosy may provide insights on organ regeneration brown armadillos on green grass
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Liver growth in armadillos inflicted with leprosy may provide insights on organ regeneration

Under their shells, armadillos hide a secret: when exposed to the bacterium that causes leprosy in humans, their livers expand considerably. This oddity, which was discovered in a recent study, might offer insights into how the body regulates liver regeneration and how to speed up the process in humans.

Hepatologist Alejandro Soto-Gutiérrez of the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, who was not involved in the study, calls the discovery quite cool.  He points out that since mice and rats make up the majority of animal research on liver regeneration, it is “refreshing” that researchers are studying a different species that might offer fresh perspectives.

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Keywords: leprosy may provide insights on organ regeneration