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In this video, Fluval Contributing Editor Gary Elson highlights swordtails, and explains how they help save human lives!
Belonging to the genus Xiphophorus, Swordtails are popular aquarium fish due to their ease of care, their peaceful nature, and their beautiful appearance. The bright orange and black hybrids commonly available in the fishkeeping hobby differ quite significantly from their wild counterparts. It was observed in the 1920s that one species, X. helleri, when hybridized with other species, develops melanoma, or skin cancer. Since then, the swordtail’s genome has become one of the most extensively studied in existence, and the findings are frequently used in cancer research, helping to save human lives!
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