The Male Jaguar Is More Sociable Than Scientists Thought

We have been studying various life forms that intrigue us for centuries. The jaguar is one of them. Scientists thought they’d already discovered everything there was to know about the species. But it turns out that they’re mistaken. Recently, researchers have found out that these big cats can have friends and are far less solitary than initially thought. The discovery was published in a journal, called Behavioral Ecology and Sociobiology.

Should the Jaguar Be Considered Solitary?

close-up of a jaguar

Until recently, lions and cheetahs were considered the only big cats to exhibit social behavior. But it seems the jaguars could fit perfectly into the category as well. The species has been observed to show some traces of social behavior, namely buddying up to increase the chances of finding prey and mates.

Male jaguars have been observed using GPS tracking devices in the Venezuelan Llanso and Brazilian Pantanal. Interestingly, males teamed up with one another when marking their territory, invading other jaguar dominions. Stunningly, jaguars even shared their prey. That is the first discovery of its kind and could potentially change how we perceive these big cats.

Similarities and Differences to Other Big Cats


The social behaviors exhibited by jaguar species are similar to how lions and cheetahs act. But there are some tangible differences in the behaviors of the species. The most obvious one is that jaguars don’t hunt together, nor do they team up with females to raise their cubs. Another feature of male jaguars’ partnerships is that their coalitions include two males.

That would suggest jaguar bros don’t spend as much time together as cheetahs, for example. Nevertheless, researchers have concluded that the evidence points toward their ability to form lasting coalitions. One of the observed pairs in the Pantanal cooperated from 2006 until 2014, sharing a tapir kill and resting by each other.

Scientists Have Made a Breakthrough in Skeletal Muscle Aging Reversal

Scientists from the University at Buffalo have reversed the hallmarks of muscle cell aging by overexpression of a specific protein, known as NANOG. The findings show how the protein can achieve the reversal without reprogramming the cells to a more stem cell-like state. This has been the most common approach to cellular aging reversal in the past.

A Protein to Reverse Muscle Cell Aging

Image of a muscle protein The study’s corresponding author Professor Stelios T. Andreadis has stated that the work of his team was focused on understanding the mechanisms of NANOG’s actions to discover druggable targets in signaling or metabolic networks that can mimic the anti-aging effects of the protein. Cellular senescence is known to happen during aging and, eventually, it leads to cells reaching a point where they can’t divide and repair anymore. This leads to genetic material in the cells becoming unstable and causing an array of metabolic and molecular dysfunction that causes disease. As a consequence, the ability of the body to regenerate decreases over time. However, this new study has shown how things may not be that bad.

Increasing the Number of Muscle Stem Cells

Scientists could reverse age-related muscle cell deterioration and even increase their DNA repair mechanisms. They did that by overexpressing a protein called NANOG in senescent human myoblasts, which is the embryonic precursor for muscle cells. Moreover, in experiments with animals, NANOG overexpressed in prematurely aging mice showed a major increase in the number of muscle stem cells present. This meant that NANOG may have rejuvenating properties and could be used in the future to help reverse the aging process.

An old man training

Stelios Andreadis also said that the work they were doing could help scientists develop new treatments or therapies that would help reverse cellular senescence. This could be of great aid to the many people around the world who suffer from age-related disorders. In the pursuit to halt and reverse aging, many strides have been made in recent years. This year, one study even showed that a supplement could promote healthier aging and reverse some of the hallmarks of old age.