The Turritopsis dohrnii, commonly known as the “immortal jellyfish,” possesses a unique ability that sets it apart from other organisms. This
jellyfish has the extraordinary capability of undergoing a process called transdifferentiation, which allows it to revert its cells back to its
earliest form and restart its life cycle.

The life cycle of a typical jellyfish involves several stages. It begins as a fertilized egg, then develops into a larva called a planula. The planula
settles on a substrate and transforms into a polyp, which resembles a small tube or stalk. The polyp eventually asexually reproduces, forming tiny organisms known as “ephyrae,” which grow into mature jellyfish.

What makes this immortal jellyfish remarkable is that when faced with adverse conditions such as injury, old age, or scarcity of resources, it can transform its adult body back into a polyp stage. Through transdifferentiation, specialized cells of this jellyfish, such as those in
the tentacles or bell, are converted into unspecialized cells. These unspecialized cells then have the potential to develop into any type of cell
in the body.

Once this immortal jellyfish reverts to the polyp stage, it can go through the growth and development process again, ultimately becoming a mature jellyfish once more. This ability effectively resets its biological clock and gives it the potential to achieve what is often referred to as
“biological immortality.”

While the term “immortal” may be misleading, as the jellyfish can still die from disease or predation, its ability to avoid death due to aging is highly unusual. The immortal jellyfish however, seems to have found a way to circumvent this aging process, allowing it to potentially live indefinitely under favorable conditions.

The discovery of the immortal jellyfish has sparked significant interest among scientists and researchers studying aging and regenerative processes. By unraveling the mechanisms behind its transdifferentiation ability, scientists hope to gain insights into possible applications for regenerative medicine and potentially unlock the secrets of human longevity.