General, Research, Technology

Monkeys also turn gray, but not due to aging

To determine a person's age, it is enoughlook at his face. If the skin is covered with wrinkles, and gray hair has formed on the hair, it means that the person is clearly over 30 years old. Scientists have long noticed that the hair on the body and head of chimpanzee monkeys also turns gray. They assumed that the hairline of our closest relatives also turns light due to age, but this has not been scientifically proven. To finally understand this issue, it was decided to study photographs of many monkeys and find out at what age they begin to turn gray. Since chimpanzees have a lifespan of about 40 years, it has been assumed that they turn gray somewhere in their 20s. But, as it turned out, the scientists were very wrong.

Chimpanzees and humans are very close relatives by nature

Chimpanzee and man

About the conducted scientific work and its resultswas written on Phys.org. A group of scientists from the George Washington University (USA) studied over a hundred photographs of chimpanzees that live in different regions of Africa. They were interested in the number of gray hairs on the bodies of animals and the real age of individuals - fortunately, the researchers knew in advance the dates of their birth. It turned out that there is no direct relationship between the age of the monkeys and the intensity of gray hair on their body.

Most chimpanzees live in the African country of Tanzania.

Chimpanzee gray hair can occurwhenever. According to scientists, monkeys can turn gray both at the age of one year and at 29 years or more. In most cases, gray hair was observed in individuals between the ages of 30 and 35 years. At the same time, there was no gray hair on the bodies of some elderly monkeys. It became clear that there was no relationship between the age of chimpanzees and the appearance of light hair on their bodies. But what other causes of gray hair are there?

See also: A new way of communication between chimpanzees and congeners has been discovered

Causes of gray hair

Most likely, monkeys' hair turns gray due toexperienced stress. Let's say some individuals have dealt with predatory animals or poachers - their bodies will obviously have more gray hair. And if the monkey lived a carefree life and most of the time only ate and was surrounded by the care of its relatives, then even in old age its fur will certainly shine black. Everything is just like people have - you probably noticed that some of your relatives and friends look much younger than their years? And all because they knew how to remain calm in all situations and did not worry about trifles.

Keep calm and be healthier

Stress can really causediscoloration of hair. Recently this was proved in the course of an experiment that was completely inhuman in my opinion. As part of scientific work, scientists subjected mice to stress - they injected substances that cause severe pain in the body and simply shook their cells. Rodents that were not fortunate enough to participate in this experiment did become covered with white hair. I wrote in detail about this scientific work and its results in this material - if interested, be sure to read it.

Mice before and after the stress experiment

In addition to stress, gray hair can be caused bycontribute to the environment. For example, if monkeys live in especially hot regions of Africa, their bodies can become lighter so as not to attract warm sunlight. In addition, gray hair can be a hereditary factor - if the father or mother of the monkey was gray, this feature can be transmitted to him. In general, there can be many reasons for the appearance of gray hair, but age is clearly not to do with it. At least in the monkey example, this is true.

It seems that this is not the first time I recommend the documentary "Chimpanzee" 2012 - very beautiful and informative!

Scientists will clearly continue to study gray hair in monkeys,because it is already clear in which direction to move. Take, for example, the assumption that gray hair grows in response to hot environments. Scientists may well study photographs of chimpanzees from different regions of our planet - if most of the individuals from hot places are covered with gray hair, then the assumption is correct. If you follow this logic, it turns out that "black" monkeys live in relatively cool places.

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In general, chimpanzees and humans have a lot in common -we and they are considered the closest relatives. But at the same time, scientists often conduct cruel experiments on them, affecting them with radiation and even damaging organs. There is even a person in the world who devoted his life to the struggle for the rights of chimpanzees and other animals - you can read about him in this material.