Chinese scientists study medical use of cockroaches

Updated 2018-03-27 09:18:03 Xinhua

Chinese scientists are taking a close look at cockroaches to explore their potential in medical treatment.

The research is led by Li Sheng, director of the Institute of Insect Science and Technology at South China Normal University in Guangzhou City.

Based on previous studies on the German cockroach by foreign researchers, Li's team has been focusing on the genetic code of the American cockroach.

According to Li, a cockroach has as many as 522 taste receptors, 329 of which have evolved into bitter receptors that respond to poisonous foods.

"They eat almost everything. They can do self-detoxification if they eat the wrong food," Li explained. "Even if it is beheaded, its body can still move for five or six days. If you cut its legs or antennae off, they will recover in just a few days and look almost the same as before."

He suggested that the factor in the body of cockroaches that helps them heal wounds and regenerate tissue might also be effective in repairing wounds to the human body.

The team's research paper, "The genomic and functional landscapes of developmental plasticity in the American cockroach," was published online in Nature Communications on March 21.

Cockroaches are an ingredient in Traditional Chinese Medicine. Extracts of active ingredients from cockroaches have also been used in modern Chinese clinics for more than 30 years, mainly to treat diseases such as gastric and oral ulcers, according to Li.

Li said his team's research suggests possibilities for wider medical use of the American cockroach.

"The extracts could even be used to make beauty masks and treat hair loss in the future," He said.

Also in the News

Nicole Kidman Recalls Oscar Glory: Loneliest Time
Showbiz2016/06/16 13:58August 15 2018 15:13:34

Nicole Kidman Recalls Oscar Glory: Loneliest Time

Attending Shanghai International Film Festival, Nicole Kidman talks about her role in "Grace of Monaco".

Labor Day Travel Peak Starts
Also in the News2014/05/01 12:16August 15 2018 15:13:34

Labor Day Travel Peak Starts

Johnny Depp Delivers a Speech 'Evolve the Future' in 'Transcendence'
Also in the News2014/04/18 13:18August 15 2018 15:13:34

Johnny Depp Delivers a Speech 'Evolve the Future' in 'Transcendence'

Hollywood star Johnny Depp's speech in the upcoming new film "Transcendence" has been disclosed on Friday, April 11th.

News:
China World Business Sports Showbiz Audio
Video:
C4 My Chinese Life The Sound Stage China Revealed Showbiz Video Travel Video
Photos:
China World Fun Travel Entertainment Sports
Travel:
Beijing Shanghai Guangzhou
Lifestyle:
Live Music Opera & Classical Movies Traditional Shows Exhibitions
Learn Chinese:
Chinese Studio Living Chinese Everyday Chinese Just For Fun Chinese Culture Buzzwords