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Science in Mind

Tadpoles see with eyes on tails in Tufts experiment

It sounds, at first, like a plot twist from a zany movie about a mad scientist: What if an eye were transplanted onto a tadpole’s tail? Would the frog in the making be merely a laboratory freak — kind of a Mr. Potato Head of science? Or would the tadpole be able to see out of its backside?

Now, a pair of serious Tufts University biologists have carefully done the experiment, demonstrating for the first time that a blind tadpole can see with an eye bulging from its tail.

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