Full scientific name: Turritopsis nutricula (McCrady, 1857).

Taxonomy according to ITIS (Integrated Taxonomic Information System):

Domain: Eukarya

Kingdom: Animalia

Phylum: Cnidaria

Class: Hydrozoa

Order: Anthoathecatae

Family: Oceanidae

Genus: Turritopsis

Species: nutricula

Synapomorphies supporting this taxonomy (ITIS and Schuchert 2005):

   Eukarya: organism’s cells contain membrane-bound organelles

   Animalia: organism develops tissues from embryonic cell layers

   Cnidaria: organism’s body contains cnidocytes (stinging cells)

   Hydrozoa: organism alternates between polyp and medusa forms

   Anthoathecatae: hydrozoans that always have a polyp stage

   Oceanidae: hydroids are monomorphic or polymorphic; sessile, stolonal, or branched colonies

   Turritopsis: genus with unique morphological traits, capable of cell transdifferentiation

   nutricula: largest and most common species of Turritopsis


Turritopsis nutricula in Latin translates roughly to "tower nurse" in English (University of Notre Dame 2012). This could very likely be due to the organism's capacity for regeneration.

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