The Pitt Mobile Science Lab made another stop at the Pittsburgh Pather's football tailgating event Thursday night where they showcased a hands-on program using hydractinia for kids and adults alike! Visitors were able to analyze the lifecycle of hydractinia, see how they react when you touch them with an eyelash, and feed the hydractinia to see how their tentacles grab their food and bring them back to eat them.
The hydracinia program, or Exploring Animal Diversity, is based off of Dr. Matthew Nicotra's allorejection research at the University of Pittsburgh. Dr. Nicotra uses hydractinia to understand the mechnisms for acceptance and rejection of organ transplants. Similar to our bodies' reaction to receiving a new organ, hydractinia may reject another for colonization if it doesn't recognize the other as one of its own and fight back.
There are two more Pitt football tailgates left, November 19th and November 26th, and the Mobile Science Lab will be launching two new programs! Stop by to see what the Mobile Science Lab is working up and discover more of the science research being conducted at the University of Pittsburgh!