On Monday, Russian scientists said they had discovered microscopic worm-like creatures that had survived for at least 24,000 years in a frozen layer of soil in Siberia.
Researchers at the Pushkin Scientific Center for Biological Research have found bdelloid rotifers, which are exclusively females, in a sample of permafrost collected in the region.
After studying multicellular invertebrates, they found that they are still capable of reproduction and have full digestive tracts.
Bdelloid rotators are resistant to radiation and are able to withstand adverse environmental conditions.
Stas Malavin from the research group said that this study is convincing evidence that multicellular animals can live tens of thousands of years in a state of cryptobiosis, in which they almost stop their metabolism in places where it is difficult to maintain life, such as in extreme conditions. hot or cold and toxic environment.
Earlier, scientists found some species of simple worms and plants in samples of frozen soil and reported that they could remain alive in the frozen state.