Researchers at the University of Washington have helped discover a new species of fish, which lives almost as deep as Mount Everest is high.

The new fish is named for the place where it lives, in the deepest place on earth, the Marianas Trench in the western Pacific Ocean.

The Mariana snail, or Pseudoliparis swirei, can survive and thrive under about 15,000 pounds per square inch of pressure.

"We like to use the badogy of an elephant standing on its thumb," said postdoctoral researcher MacKenzie Gerringer at the Friday Harbor lab at the University of Washington, which is also equipped to scan CT.

Gerringer, lead author of an article just published in Zootaxa magazine, said that fish can survive because they do not have a swim bladder full of air, like most fish species.

"They do not have air spaces," said Gerringer.

He also said that the cellular structure of fish depends on special proteins that allow these cells to function under great pressure.

The new species was first noticed during research trips in 2014. They were found living inside the trench along the sides from 22,600 feet up to 26,686 feet down.

It is believed that the fish are scattered, live inside the trench and feed on crustaceans and other invertebrates of marine life. A photograph of the tomography shows a crustacean inside the fish. Gerringer said the discovery was a surprise since it was believed that no fish could live at such depths within the trench.

Fish have no scales, and the skin is translucent. The main organs like the liver can be seen through it.

The fish owes its name to the sailor who helped discover the Mariana Trench during an expedition in 1875, Herber Swire aboard the HMS Challenger.

"We believe that the era of exploration went out of style," Gerringer said. "There's a lot more out there."

Study of fish pairs with research on other organisms that live in extreme oceanic environments that are deep, very hot or very cold. Research on these so-called "extremophiles" can also help astrobiologists identify planets outside our own solar systems, which may be able to support life under difficult circumstances.

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