Polar Bear Knut: The cause of death has been determined

When the polar bear Knut was born in Berlin Zoo in 2006, it was a sensation. When his beloved caretaker Thomas Dörflein and three years later the cute polar bear himself died, it was a tragedy. People all over the world mourned the cute polar bear that had taken hearts by storm.

An inflammation of the brain had led to an epileptic attack. He fell into the water and drowned. But the autopsy puzzled the researchers at the time: no pathogens, neither viruses nor bacteria, were discovered that could have caused the brain inflammation. Now it is clear: The animal suffered from a rare autoimmune disease that has only recently been known and has so far only been found in humans. The video shows the sweetest scenes of polar bear Knut and his keeper. Attention, handkerchiefs ready!

In the video, the cute polar bear is shown shortly after birth. His mom had rejected him and so the caretaker Thomas Dörflein became Knut's foster father. He took care of the sweet face, caring for and caring for him, playing with him. Polar Bear Knut followed his human dad everywhere. In 2008 Dörflein died suddenly and unexpectedly, Knut was suddenly all alone in the world again. Less than three years later, the four-legged friend followed his favorite person to death. Who knows, maybe they have been reunited since then, playing and cuddling together on a cloud and watching the hustle and bustle on earth.

The findings from the polar bear's autopsy represent an important advance for science, reports, among other things, the "mirror". The autoimmune disease, in which the immune system fights the body's own brain cells like pathogens, is called anti-NMDA receptor encephalitis. It has only been known to people since 2007 and causes learning and memory disorders, hallucinations, dementia or epileptic seizures. It is only now certain that animals can also contract it. The researchers now hope that the findings can be used to improve the diagnostic procedure so that the disease can be recognized and cured more quickly.

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