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Scientists have discovered how cats can purr

Scientists have discovered how cats can purr

The article was published in the scientific journal Current Biology (Photo: sergeyskleznev/envato)

the cats They have always been very interesting animals, viewed with curiosity and admiration by humans. Last Tuesday (03/10), an article published in the scientific journal Current Biology revealed, for the first time, how these cats are able to purr, as lower-frequency sounds are generally emitted by larger animals with longer vocal cords.

You Researchers He discovered that the distinct voice key involved “pads” on the vocal cords. They are made of connective tissue and are attached to the vocal folds to increase their density, making them vibrate more slowly to produce that purr.

The study contradicts previous beliefs that muscle contractions allow cats to purr. Scientists believe that this action comes from negative dynamic behavior that continues automatically after the brain sends an initial signal.

How and why do cats purr?

As the study participants point out, low-frequency vocal fold vibrations involve a special vocal mode, and when we produce a deep, hoarse sound by vibrating the vocal folds at a very low frequency, the thickness of the opening and the sound level contribute to the tension in the vocal folds, as well as the flow of air through them.

With this in mind, researchers understand that the pads that are made the cats purr They work in a similar way, allowing the sound to emerge even though the vocal cords are much shorter, through the same mechanisms that generally generate higher frequency sounds, such as meowing.

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The team adds that collagen and elastin fibers in the connective tissue of the vocal cords are arranged in structures that dampen the high frequencies of their sounds. The conclusion is that muscle contraction is not necessary purrConnective tissue structures may be the main factor.

However, the reason behind cats purring remains a mystery. Some theories suggest that purring signals contentment and encourages more interaction with humans, but the same team recognizes that future studies are needed to obtain specific information about the role of purring in the health and well-being of cats.

Previously, the scientific community was responsible for bringing to light very strange information about these beloved cats. In 2022, for example, researchers discovered how the cats They can get into such small spaces.

Basically, the secret is in the shoulder girdle. In humans, the shoulder girdle consists of the shoulder blades and the clavicle, but the shoulder blades are in… the cats It is connected to the rest of the body only by muscles and not by bones.

The same applies to the collarbones the catsIt is also much smaller compared to the rest of the body. These are anatomical features that help cats pass through narrow openings.

In parallel, it is still uncertain whether cats dream or not, but studies have shown that they have the same physical sleep characteristics as humans.

a Sciences I’ve also discovered how long a cat lives: with improvements in nutrition and veterinary medicine, including vaccines and therapeutic agents, cats can now live for more than 15 years, and in some cases, even beyond two decades.

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