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蝙蝠基因的秘密

Emma Teeling: The secret of the bat genome

TED 独立制作
independently organized TED event
科学馆科学馆荣誉出品
science galleryproudly hosted by science gallery
大家下午好
Good afternoon.
接下来 我想请大家根据我的描述
So, what I want you all to do right now,
猜出一种哺乳动物
is to think of this mammal that I’m going to describe to you.
(我要说的)第一个这种哺乳动物的特征
The first thing I’m going to tell you about this mammal
就是它对我们的生态系统有着不可替代的作用
is that it is essential for our ecosystems to function correctly.
如果把它从生态系统中除去(那么)整个生态系统将不能正常运行
If we remove this mammal from our ecosystems, they simply will not work.
以上是我要说的第一点
That’s the first thing.
第二点是:由于这种哺乳动物有很独特的感觉能力
The second thing is that due to the unique sensory abilities of this mammal,
如果我们研究它
if we study this mammal,
我们就能更深入地了解人类的感官疾病 比如说:视觉和听觉障碍
we’re going to get great insight into our diseases of the senses, such as blindness and deafness.
(我完全相信)这种生物第三点非常神秘的特征就是
And the third really intriguing aspect of this mammal,
长寿的秘密就深藏在它的DNA中
is that I fully believe that the secret of everlasting youth lies deep within its DNA.
(根据以上描述)在座的各位想到是哪种动物了吗?
So are you all thinking?
嗯……
So…
这是种很神奇的动物 对吧
Magnificent creature, isn’t it?
有谁想到这是蝙蝠的?
Who here thought of a bat?
我看到大概一半的观众都认为是(蝙蝠)
I can see half the audience agrees with me
看来要让你们所有人都相信 我还要费番功夫
and I have a lot of work to do to convince the rest of you.
在过去的20年中 我有幸来研究这些美丽又迷人的生物
So, I have had the good fortune for the past 20 years to study these fascinating and beautiful mammals.
蝙蝠在现存所有哺乳动物中占1/5
1/5 of all living mammals is a bat.
并且 它们有很独特的特征
And they have very unique attributes.
就像我们熟知的那样
Bats, as we know them,
蝙蝠已经在这个星球上存在了大概6400万年
have been around on this planet for about 64 mllion years.
蝙蝠的一个最独特的特点就是 他(虽然)是哺乳动物 却可以飞
One of the most unique things that bats do as a mammal is that they fly.
飞行一直就很困难
Now, flight is inherently a difficult thing.
脊椎动物的飞行只进化了三次
Flight within vertebrates has only evolved three times.
一次是蝙蝠
Once in the bats,
一次是鸟
once in the birds
还有一次是翼龙
and once in the pterodactyls.
也就是说 飞行非常损耗代谢
And so, as with flight, it’s very metabolically costly.
(但)蝙蝠已经学会并且进化到可以处理(代谢消耗问题)
Bats have learned and evolved how to deal with this.
蝙蝠的又一个非常独特的特征
But one other extremely unique thing about bats
就是它们能用声音来感知它们(周围)的环境
is that they’re able to use sound to perceive their environment.
它们用回波定位(来感知)
They use echolocation.
我说的回波定位又是什么呢?
Now, what I mean by echolocation.
蝙蝠从喉部产生声音 由嘴或鼻子发出
They emit a sound from their larynx out to their mouth or to their nose.
这种声波放出后 碰到他所处环境的物体 (行成)回声又反射回来。
This sound wave comes out and it reflects and echoes back off objects in their environment.
这样 蝙蝠就能接受到这回声
And the bats then hear these echoes
然后他们把这种信息转化成听觉图象
and they turn this information into an acoustic image.
这就使他们(即使)在完全黑暗的环境中(也)能适应
And this enables them to orient in complete darkness.
它们确实看起来很奇怪
Indeed, they do look very strange.
我们身为人类 (本身)就是视觉动物
We’re humans.We are visual species.
当科学家首次发现蝙蝠竟能用声音
When scientists first realised that bats were up to using sound,
来适应夜晚并在夜间飞行、活动时 我们都无法相信
to be able to fly and orient and move at night.We didn’t believe it.
尽管这样的证据(有关蝙蝠靠声音行动的证据)已经存在了一百多年 我们始终难以相信
For a hundred years despite evidence to show that this is what they were doing, we didn’t believe it.
现在 如果你看到这只蝙蝠 可能会觉得有点陌生
Now, if you look at this bat, it looks a little bit alien.
事实上 一位非常著名的哲学家托马斯·内格尔(Thomas Nagel)曾说过:
Indeed, the very famous philosopher,Thomas Nagel once said,
“(如果)想真正了解这个星球上不熟悉的生命体
“To truly experience an alien life form on this planet,
你(就必须)把自己跟正飞的用回声定位的蝙蝠关在一个全黑的房间里
you should lock yourself inside a room with the flying echo-locating bat in complete darkness.”
并且如果你观察菊头蝠的头部特征
And if you look at the actual physical characteristics on the face of this beautiful horseshoe bat,
你就会看到这些特征有助于发出和感知声音
you see a lot of these characteristics are dedicated to be able to make sound and perceive it.
特别大的耳朵 奇特的鼻叶 极小的眼睛
Very big ears, strange nose leaves, but teeny-tiny eyes.
所以 如果你再一次看这只蝙蝠
So again, if you just look at this bat,
你会发现声音对蝙蝠的生存至关重要
you realise sound is very important for its survival.
大部分蝙蝠看起来都像刚才的那只
Most bats look like the previous one.
然而 仍有一部分蝙蝠是不用回波定位的
However, there are a group that do not use echolocation.
它们不用声音来感知环境 它们 就是狐蝠
They do not perceive their environment using sound and these are the flying foxes.
如果在座有人有幸去过澳大利亚
If anybody’s ever been lucky enough to be in Australia,
你(可能会)在悉尼的植物园看到它们
you’ve seen them coming out of the botanic gardens in Sydney.
并且如果你看到它的脸
And if you just look at their face,
你就能看出它们有更大的眼睛和更小的耳朵
you can tell they have much larger eyes and much smaller ears.
由此 不同种蝙蝠的感官能力也大不相同
So among and within bats is a huge variation in their ability to use sensory perception.
接下来我要说的内容也很重要
Now, this is going to be important for what I’m going to tell you later during the talk.
现在 如果“在你的钟楼里有蝙蝠”这样的想法让你恐惧
Now, if the idea of bats in your belfry terrifies you,
并且我知道有些人可能 在看到巨大的蝙蝠时会感到有点不舒服
and I know some people probably are feeling a little sick looking at very large images of bats.
这(种想法)可能并不稀奇
That’s propably not that surprising because here,
因为在西方文化中 蝙蝠是被妖魔化的
in Western Culture, bats have been demonised.
真的 当然 一位叫作布洛姆·斯托克的北都柏林男士写的那本著名小说《德拉库拉》
Really, of course the famous book “Dracula” ,written by a fellow northside Dubliner Bram Stoker,
可能是(造成这种想法的)重要原因
propably is mainly responsible for this.
除此之外 我也认为这(种想法)与蝙蝠总在夜晚出来活动
However, I also think it’s got to do with the fact that bats come out at night
我们不能真正了解它们(有关)
and we don’t really understand them.
我们(人类)对了解世界的方式与我们不同的生物总有点害怕
We’re a little frightened by things that can perceive the world slightly different than us.
蝙蝠经常是某些鬼怪的代名词
Bats are usually synonymous with some type of evil events.
它们是恐怖电影中的罪魁 比如那个著名电影(Nightwing)《夜翼》
They are the perpetrators in horror movies such as famous “Nightwing”.
此外 如果你细想的话 魔鬼经常是长着(一对)蝙蝠翅膀
Also if you think about it, demons always have bat wings,
而鸟啊(当然了)或者天使 都长着鸟的翅膀
whereas birds, they typically, or angels, have bird wings.
这就是当下的西方社会(的想法)
Now, this is western society
今晚我想做的事就是
and what I hope to do tonight
让你们相信在中国传统文化中
is to convince you of the Chinese traditional culture,
他们把蝙蝠看作是好运的象征
that they perceive bats as creatures that bring good luck.
并且 事实上 如果你走进中国家庭 你可能会看到这样的图案
And indeed, if you walk into a Chinese home you may see an image such as this.
这(个图案)被叫做五福(蝠)
This is considered the Five Blessings.
汉字中 “蝠”与“福”音相同
The Chinese word for “bat” sounds like the Chinese word for “happiness”.
中国人相信蝙蝠可以带来财富、 健康、长寿、美德和祥和
And they believe that bats bring wealth, health, longevity, virtue and serenity.
并且实际上 在这个图案中 五个蝙蝠环绕着一个“寿”字图案
And indeed, in this image you have a picture of longevity surrounded by five bats.
现在,今晚,我想跟你说并且让你明白的就是
Now, what I want to do tonight is to talk to you
这些福运中至少有三个
and to show you that at least three of these blessings
完全是由蝙蝠代表的,并且如果我们
are definitely represented by a bat and that if we study bats,
研究蝙蝠的话 我们就会更靠近好运
we will get nearer to getting each of these blessings.
那么 (首先对于)财富(来说)
So, wealth.
蝙蝠如何能带来财富呢?
How can a bat possibly bring us wealth?
就像我之前说过的:“蝙蝠对整个生态系统的正常运行至关重要”
As I’ve said before, bats are essential for our ecosystems to function correctly.
为什么呢?
And why is this?
在热带 蝙蝠是很多植物的传粉者
Bats in the tropics are major pollinators of many plants.
它们以果子为食 然后散布这些水果的种子
They also feed on fruit and they disperse the seeds of these fruits.
蝙蝠能为龙舌兰传粉
Bats are responsible for pollinating the tequila plant
而在墨西哥有价值数百万美元(加工龙舌兰的)工厂
and this is a multimillion dollar industry in Mexico.
所以实际上 我们需要蝙蝠让我们的生态系统更好地运行
So indeed, we need them for our ecosystems to function properly.
如果没有蝙蝠 我们会遇到很大困难
Without them it’s going to be a problem.
大部分蝙蝠都是食量惊人的昆虫猎食者
But most bats are voracious insect predators.
据估算 在美国的一小群棕色大蝙蝠中
It’s been estimated in the US in a tiny colony of big, brown bats
它们每年会捕食一百多万只昆虫
that they will feed on over a million insects a year.
但在目前的美国
And in the United States of America right now,
蝙蝠正受到白鼻综合征的威胁
bats are being threatened by a disease known as white-nose syndrome.
这种病(白鼻综合征)正在美国缓慢传播开来 并且感染了大量蝙蝠
It’s working its way slowly across the US and wiping out populations of bats.
科学家估计:在生态系统中 蝙蝠数量的减少
And scientists have estimated that 1,300 metric tons of insects a year
(直接)导致一年中1300公制吨的昆虫存活下来
are now remaining in the ecosystems due to the loss of bats.
在美国 风场对蝙蝠的吸引也威胁着蝙蝠的生存
Bats are also threatened in the US by their attraction to wind farms.
我再强调一遍: 目前 蝙蝠正面临威胁
Again, right now bats are looking in a little bit of problem.
并且 只是在美国 蝙蝠就已经受到了很大威胁
They are very threatened in the United States of America alone.
那么 这些能怎么帮到我们呢?
Now how can this help us?
好吧 我们已经可以预见:如果我们把蝙蝠从生态平衡中剔除
Well, it has been calculated that if we were to remove bats from the equation,
我们就必须使用杀虫剂来去除所有那些以我们的农作物为食的害虫
we’re gonna have to then use insecticides to remove all those pest insects that feed on our agricultural crops.
并且据估计 单是在美国
And for one year in the US alone,
如果我们消灭了蝙蝠 就要花费220亿美元(来除虫 )
it’s estimated that it’s gonna cost 22 billion US dollars, if we remove bats.
因此 蝙蝠的确能为我们带来财富
So indeed, bats then do bring us wealth.
蝙蝠能维持生态平衡 由此帮我们省下不少费用
They maintain the health of our ecosystems and also they save us money.
我再说一次:蝙蝠的第一大益处就是:对我们的生态系统很重要
So again, that’s the first blessing–bats are important for our ecosystems.
那第二个是什么呢?
What about the second?
(蝙蝠)对健康有什么作用呢?
What about health?
你身体的每个细胞储存着你的基因组
Inside every cell in your body lies your genome.
(这些)基因组组成DNA
Your genome is made up of your DNA,
内含蛋白质的DNA解码能让你进行各项活动 也让你成为你
your DNA codes for proteins that enable you to function and interact and be as you are.
目前 由于现代分子技术的发展进步
Now, since the new advancements in modern molecular technologies,
排列基因组用时短
it is now possible for us to sequence our own genome in a very rapid time
花费少
and a very very reduced cost.
现在 当我们进行这项工作(指排列基因组)时 发现我们的基因组有很多不同
Now, when we’ve been doing this we realized that these variations within our genome.
所以 我希望你能看看你面前的(这个)人
So, I want you to look at the person besides you.
快速扫一眼就行
Just have a quick look.
并且我们需要明白:你DNA中每300个碱基对就会让你有些许不同
And what we need to realize is that every 300 base pairs in your DNA, you’re a little bit different.
并且 其中一个现代分子医学领域的巨大挑战
And one of the grand challenges right now in modern molecular medicine
就是查明这种不同是否更易让你患病
is to work out whether this variation makes you more susceptible to diseases?
还是这种不同只是让你与众不同
Or does this variation just make you different?
那么 这是什么意思呢
Again, what does it mean here?
这种不同究竟意味着什么呢
What does this variation actually mean?
所以 如果我们想利用所有的新分子数据 并且 将我们接下来几年收集和“上线”(指出现)
So, if we are to capitalise on all of this new molecular data and personalise genomic information that is coming online
的信息更加个人化
that we will be able to have in the next few years,
我们必须区分好(以上)两种(基因)
we have to be able to differentiate between the two.
那么 我们该如何做呢?
So how do we do this?
嗯 我认为我们可以先看一下自然法则
Well, I believe we just look at nature’s experiments.
也就是说 通过自然选择 时间推移 基因突变的方式
So, through natural selection, over time, mutations,
妨碍身体功能的蛋白质变异将被驱逐出历史舞台
variations that disrupt the function of a protein will not be tolerated over time.
进化就像过筛子一样
Evolution acts as a sieve.
剔除有害变异
It sieves out the bad variation.
因此 如果你观察很多进化上相差很远 生活环境也截然不同的哺乳动物一个基因组中的相同区域
So therefore, if you look at the same region of a genome in many mammals that have been evolutionary distant from each other and also ecologically divergent.
你就能更好地理解那个点(指一个基因组中的相同区域)的进化先进性
You will get a better understanding of what the evolutionary prior of that site is.
就是说(这种基因)对于哺乳动物的生存是否重要
I.e. if it is important for the mammal to function for its survival,
这(指对相同基因组区域的观察)对于所有不同物种 种群都同样适用
it will be the same in all of those different species, taxa.
因此 如果我们想着手研究它(指基因组的影响) 我们需要做的就是:
So therefore, if we were to do this, what we would do is
测定所有不同哺乳动物中这个(基因组的)区域 并查明它(指基因组区域)是否相同或不同
sequence that region in all these different mammals and ascertain if it’s the same or if it’s different.
如果相同 这就表明这个区域对生物功能很重要
So, if it is the same, this indicates that that site is important for function,
也就是说:这个区域是会引发疾病的基因突变(的可能性)下降
so a disease mutation should fall within that site.
同样的 如果我们看到的所有哺乳动物都在这个区域有一个黄色基因组
So, in this case here, if all the mammals that we look at have a yellow type genome at that site,
这可能表示紫色(基因组)是不正常的
it propably suggests that purple is bad.
如果你观察哺乳动物 那(上述)情况可能更明显
This could be even more powerful if you look at mammals –
他们(指哺乳动物)的行为有些微不同
They are doing things slightly differently.
举个例子:我看到的这个基因组区域
So say for example, the region of the genome that I was looking at
对于视觉来说很重要
was a region that’s important for vision.
如果我们观察哺乳动物中视力不太好的物种 比如说蝙蝠 的(这个基因组)区域
If we look at that region in mammals that don’t see so well such as bats,
并发现视力不好的蝙蝠有紫色(类型的)基因
and we find that bats that don’t see so well have the purple type,
我们就能由此找到可能是它(指紫色基因)造成了这种疾病
we know that this is probably what’s causing this disease.
目前 在我的实验中 我们已经用蝙蝠来观察这两种感官疾病(指上文中的盲 聋)
So in my lab we’ve been using bats to look at two different types of diseases of the senses.
我们查找致盲因素 但我们为什么要这样做呢?
We’re looking at blindness. And why would you do this?
3.14亿人有视觉障碍 而其中有4500万人是盲人
314 million people are visually impaired and 45 million of these are blind.
失明已经成为极大的问题
So blindness is a big problem.
并且绝大多数视觉障碍都来自遗传性疾病
And a lot of these blind disorders come from inherited diseases.
因此 我们必须尽力更好地了解是哪种基因突变造成了这种疾病
So we want to try and better understand which mutations in the gene causes the disease.
同样的 我们也观察听觉障碍
Also we look at deafness.
每1000个新生儿中就有一个失聪
1 in every 1,000 newborn babies are deaf.
并且等我们80岁时 一半以上都有听力问题
And when we reach 80, over half of us will also have a hearing problem.
同样地 听觉障碍也有很多潜在原因
Again, there’s many underlying genetic causes for this.
所以 我们在实验中做的 就是观察这些感官专家——蝙蝠
So what we’ve been doing in my lab is looking at these unique sensory specialists, the bats.
我们也同样观察了他们基因中的缺陷来找出致盲基因
And we have looked at genes that cause blindness when there’s a defect in them.
找出失聪基因
Genes that cause deafness when there’s a defect in them.
现在我们已经能推测出是哪个(基因)区域最可能引发疾病
And now we can predict which sites are most likely to cause disease.
因此 蝙蝠对于我们的健康同样重要——它让我们更好地掌握基因的作用
So bats are also important for our health, to enable us to better understand how our genome functions.
这就是我说的第二点
So this is where we are right now.
那么 (蝙蝠)对于未来的作用呢?
But what about the future?
对于长寿的作用
What about longevity?
这就是我将要说的
This is where we’re going to go.
并且 就像我之前说过的 我完全相信永葆青春的秘密就藏在蝙蝠的基因当中
And as I’ve said before, I really believe that the secret of everlasting youth lies within the bat genome.
那我们究竟为什么这么关注衰老呢?
So why should we be interested in aging at all?
呐 这个就是16世纪画中的罗马——《青春之泉》
Well, really, this is a pictured Rome from the 1500s of the fountain of youth.
衰老 公认是最常见 但也最不熟悉的生物特征
Aging is considered one of the most familiar, yet the least well understood aspects of all of biology.
并且 实际上 早在文明之初 人类就在寻找逃避(衰老)的方法
And really, since the dawn of civilization, mankind has sought to avoid it.
但我们将更好地了解它
But we are going to have to understand it a bit better.
就只是在欧洲 截至2050年 将会新增70%65岁以上的人
In Europe alone by 2050 there’s going to be a 70% increase of individuals over 65.
而80岁以上的人将有超过170%的增长
And 170% increase of individuals over 80.
伴随衰老 我们(的各项技能)也会退化
As we age we deteriorate.
而这种退化会给社会造成很多问题
And this deterioration causes problems for our society.
因此我们必须解决这个问题
So we have to address it.
那么 永葆青春的秘密究竟又是如何藏在蝙蝠基因中的呢?
So, how could this secret of everlasting youth actually lie within the bat genome?
有人想猜猜这只蝙蝠可以活多长时间吗
Does anybody want to hazard a guess over how long this bat could live for?
有谁? 举下手 谁认为是两年?
Who, put up your hands, who says two years?
没人
Nobody.
一个人
One?
那 10年呢?
How about 10 years?
嗯 有些人这么认为
Some.
30年呢?
How about 30?
那40年呢?
How about 40?
好吧 完全不同的回答啊
Ok, it’s a whole varied response.
这只是鼠耳蝠
This bat is myotis brandtii.
是最长寿的蝙蝠
It’s the longest living bat.
它可以活到42岁
It lives for up to 42 years.
并且 现在这只蝙蝠仍生存在野外
And this bat’s still alive in the wild today.
所以这究竟有什么奇特的呢?
But what would be so amazing about this?
好吧 尤其是在哺乳动物中 你的寿命与身材大小和 新陈代谢率是有关系的
Well, typically in mammals there is a relationship between body size, metabolic rate and how long you can live for.
并且你可以根据一个哺乳动物的身材大小来推断它的寿命
And you can predict how long a mammal can live for given its body size.
尤其是一些小型哺乳动物 动作敏捷 寿命短
So, typically small mammals live fast, die young.
想想老鼠
Think of the mice.
但蝙蝠完全不同
But bats are very different.
你可以从图中看到
As you can see here on this graph,
蓝色的这些是所有其他哺乳动物
in blue, these are all of the other mammals.
而蝙蝠虽然代谢率很高 其寿命却是预测(寿命)的9倍
But bats can live up to 9 times longer than expected despite having a really really high metabolic rate.
问题在于 它们是如何做到的?
And the question is how can they do that?
有19中哺乳动物的寿命比根据其身形大小预测的(寿命)要长 比人类的寿命也更长
There are 19 species of mammals that live longer than expected given their body size than man,
而(这19种动物中)有18种是蝙蝠
and 18 of those are bats.
因此 它们的DNA里一定隐藏着让它们能应对各种代谢刺激(尤其是飞机)秘密
So therefore, they must have something within their DNA that (en)ables them to deal with the metabolic stresses, particularly a flight.
它们比同样大小的哺乳动物要多耗费3倍的精力
They spend 3 times more energy the mammals of the same size
但却似乎不会(因此)付出代价或承担(恶果)
but don’t seem to suffer the consequences or the effects.
所以目前 在我的实验中 我们把最先进的蝙蝠生物学与最新的现代分子技术结合起来
So right now, in my lab, we’re combining state-of-the-art bat field biology –
(我们)走出实验室 抓“长寿”的蝙蝠
going out and catching the long-lived bats – with the most up-to-date modern molecular technology,
观察它们究竟做了什么来延缓衰老 这就是我们(在实验中)做的
to understand better what it is that they do to stop aging, as we do.
我希望5年后 我可以再给大家一个关于这个(指蝙蝠对抗衰老的奥秘)的演讲
And hopefully in the next 5 years I’ll be giving you a TED Talk on that.
衰老一直都是我们人类的大难题
Aging is a big problem for humanity.
我相信 通过对蝙蝠的研究 我们能解密让哺乳动物长寿的
And I believe that by studying bats we can uncover the molecular mechanisms
分子序列
that enable mammals achieve extraordinary longevity.
如果我们发现了它们的奥秘 或许 就可以通过基因疗法
If we find out what they’re doing, perhaps through gene therapy,
实现人类的长寿
we can enable us to do the same thing.
也就是说 我们可以延缓甚至是对抗衰老
Potentially, this means that we could hold aging or maybe even reverse it.
想象一下(那有多好)
And just imagine what that would be like.
所以 我真的认为 我们不应该把它们看作是夜空中“长翅膀的”恶魔 而是我们的大英雄
So really, I don’t think we should be thinking of them as flying demons of the night but more as our superheroes,
同样 我也相信 如果我们能正确看待蝙蝠
and the reality that bats can bring us so much benefits
它们就能为我们带来这么多益处的事实
if we just look in the right place.
蝙蝠有益于生态系统
They’re good for our ecosystem,
它们让我们了解基因组是如何发挥作用的
they allow us understand how our genome functions
并且它们可能也掌握着永葆青春的奥秘
and they potentially hold secret to everlasting youth.
所以 今晚当你走出这个大厅
So tonight, when you walk out of here
抬头看向夜空
and you look up at the night skies
看到这些正在飞行的迷人生物
and you see this beautiful flying mammal,
我希望你能报以微笑
I want you to smile.
谢谢大家(掌声)
Thank you. (Applause)
科学馆科学馆荣誉出品
science galleryproudly hosted by science gallery
TED 独立制作
independently organized TED event

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视频概述

蝙蝠的三大益处:对生态环境有不可替代的作用 对人类研究感官疾病有重要意义 有助于解决衰老难题

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收集自网络

翻译译者

Patricia

审核员

赖皮

视频来源

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AHcTWlxWzpE

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