Completed in 2014, the AquaCore facility is unique amongst research institutions in Australia, providing the space where ARMI houses and breeds their sharks and axolotls, important model organisms for regenerative biology.
Shark species are critical to understanding the evolution and development of regenerative biology. Generally considered to be the forerunners of modern jawed vertebrates, sharks display many traits associated with primitive vertebrate biology, in particular the ability to regenerate tissue - a feat most famous for allowing sharks to regenerate their teeth indefinitely. The AquaCore facility generates and maintains brood stock for the production of embryos, providing our researchers with valuable stem cells for use in their studies.
The axolotl has long been an important species for medical and regenerative biology research. Showcasing another common aspect of primitive vertebrate biology, axolotls do not heal by scarring, and are capable of regenerating entire limbs and organs, even damaged organs transplanted from a different individual. The observation of their growth and maturation has generated key knowledge on the processes by which the vertebra is formed. They are a mainstay model of regeneration and regular residents of the AquaCore.