New studies show that newborn mice can quickly heal their own hearts.
The findings showed that mice can not only effectively grow back part of their heart that was removed just one day after being born, but within just 21 days, the heart was shown to be fully functioning properly.
Other studies have shown that certain fish or amphibians may be able to regrow organs, like the heart, following an injury.
This study, however, is the first to analyze this ability in mammals.
Research for the study was conducted at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center and the results were published in Science.
The study showed that up to 15 percent removal of a mouse’s newborn heart, would be able to not only grow back, but function exactly like a normal heart.
The same procedure produced different results when tested on mice that were one week old.
Researchers believe the self-repair potential for mice to be very short-term, and only occur closely following birth.
Experts suggest this study may pave the way for additional studies, the goal to eventually determine how a human heart can fix itself.