Blue M&M’s Turn Rats Blue and Help Heal Spinal Injuries: WTF?

Blue RatHere’s a really crazy “health” story in 2009 from CNN I recently found. If you want some technical info on this dye check out its Wikipedia page. Reports CNN Health:

The same blue food dye found in M&Ms and Gatorade could be used to reduce damage caused by spine injuries, offering a better chance of recovery, according to new research.

Researchers at the University of Rochester Medical Center found that when they injected the compound Brilliant Blue G (BBG) into rats suffering spinal cord injuries, the rodents were able to walk again, albeit with a limp.

The only side effect was that the treated mice temporarily turned blue. The results of the study, published in the “Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences,” build on research conducted by the same center five years ago.

In August 2004, scientists revealed how Adenosine triphosphate, which is known as ATP and described as the “energy currency of life,” surges to the spinal cord soon after injury occurs.

Researchers found that the sudden influx of ATP killed off healthy cells, making the initial injury far worse. But when they injected oxidized ATP into the injury, it was found to block the effect of ATP, allowing the injured rats to recover and walk again.

More on CNN

19 Comments on "Blue M&M’s Turn Rats Blue and Help Heal Spinal Injuries: WTF?"

  1. justagirl | Jan 13, 2011 at 9:02 pm |

    AAWWW!!

  2. justagirl | Jan 13, 2011 at 5:02 pm |

    AAWWW!!

  3. I feel terrible for wanting a blue mouse right now…

  4. I feel terrible for wanting a blue mouse right now…

    • Seamus Dubh | Jan 14, 2011 at 9:25 am |

      But it’s still too damn cute.

    • There are rats with a blue-grey (slate blue) coat available, though you will need to look around.
      I wonder if this effect can be achieved by feeding them blue dye? Seems harmless enough…

  5. Seamus Dubh | Jan 14, 2011 at 1:25 pm |

    But it’s still too damn cute.

  6. There are rats with a blue-grey (slate blue) coat available, though you will need to look around.
    I wonder if this effect can be achieved by feeding them blue dye? Seems harmless enough…

  7. Anonymous | Jan 14, 2011 at 3:52 pm |

    got the blues..

  8. gondolfin | Jan 14, 2011 at 11:52 am |

    got the blues..

  9. It just doesn’t look right though.

  10. Wh666-666 | Jan 14, 2011 at 10:25 pm |

    I think you’re all missing the point and focusing on a rat.

    This is promising for humans suffering from spinal injuries.

  11. Wh666-666 | Jan 14, 2011 at 6:25 pm |

    I think you’re all missing the point and focusing on a rat.

    This is promising for humans suffering from spinal injuries.

  12. I think we all now know how The Beast came to be Professor X’s main scientist. Self testing is for the win.

  13. I think we all now know how The Beast came to be Professor X’s main scientist. Self testing is for the win.

  14. “I just can’t understand it. They all end up turning into blueberries.”
    – Willy Wonka

  15. “I just can’t understand it. They all end up turning into blueberries.”
    – Willy Wonka

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