Name: Carl W Gamauf
If we surgically removed gills from a fish, could we put them on our body?
Could a human breath under water?
No. They would have to be connected correctly with the circulatory system, for one
thing. For another, the diffusion of oxygen in water is very slow compared to air,
so we wouldn't get enough oxygen to satisfy our needs as humans.
Dear Dr. Frankenstein:
Technically, if you were able to supply those transplanted gills with a good blood
supply, and assuming you could prevent your body from rejecting such a foreign object,
and assuming those gills were large enough to provide your body with sufficient
oxygenated blood, and that our very different type of blood would even function to
carry oxygen from the gill, then....sure, no problem! A human could "breathe" (or
"respire") under water!!
Tom F Ihde
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Update: June 2012