5
$\begingroup$

I am writing about a blood magic cult, and they drink/paint with collected blood to preform rituals and bursts of magic. Most of their supply is garnered through the use of human cattle, but in a pinch blood of other animals can give some power (but the power is greatly reduced). The story takes place in a mythical setting, but I would like to stick to creatures found on Earth.

I know primates have similar blood, but what about other kinds of animals? It would help my story to have a list of non-primate animals that have blood similar to human blood, and figured this would be the place to ask. The best answer would have a few animals with very similar blood, a few animals with extremely different blood, and a short explanation of what makes it so.

$\endgroup$
  • $\begingroup$ google.com/… $\endgroup$ – Morris The Cat May 15 '19 at 15:56
  • $\begingroup$ @MorrisTheCat I edited my question to be more specific. $\endgroup$ – Alex May 15 '19 at 16:00
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ All vertebrates have similar blood (except those which don't, but those are specific exceptions due to special circumstances). Quick, can you tell off the top of your head what are the differences between salmon blood and human blood? Or between chicken blood and human blood? Or between pig blood and human blood? And even more so when considered as food, not as blood; when considered as food almost any kind of vertebrate blood (except exceptions due to specific adaptions) is pretty much equivalent -- too much salt, much too much iron, some sugar, little protein, nowhere near enough fat. $\endgroup$ – AlexP May 15 '19 at 16:53
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ @cyn human cattle as in humans who are treated like cattle $\endgroup$ – Alex May 15 '19 at 17:02
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ Alex then I suggest you change the phrase to something like: "the use of humans kept as cattle..." $\endgroup$ – Cyn says make Monica whole May 15 '19 at 17:12
5
$\begingroup$

In general, blood is not under significant selective pressure, and when it is - e.g. elongated erythrocytes of camels - it's usually confined to the odd species rather than whole higher taxa. As such, genetic drift should be the main driver of blood changing over generations.

Therefore, the further phylogenetically we go from Primates, the less and less similar the blood will be. In order of similarity, a list would by this reasoning go like this:

  • Colugos
  • Tree shrews
  • Rodents, rabbits, hares & pikas
  • Ungulates, carnivores, whales, bats, pangolins and shrews & kin
  • Anteaters, sloths, armadillos

So, colugos would be the absolute best non-primates for blood. They;re only found in Southeast Asia, though, as are tree shrews, so perhaps rodents would be the best bet - they're cosmopolitan, and wherever they're found they're really damn common.

| improve this answer | |
$\endgroup$
6
$\begingroup$

I recently read online a somewhat improbable theory that the first humans were hybrids,the result of intercourse between chimpanzees and wild pigs. A rather dubious theory, but no doubt suggested by the many biological similarities between humans and pigs.

https://phys.org/news/2013-07-chimp-pig-hybrid-humans.html1

As a matter of fact, pig blood is similar enough to human blood that there is serious medical interest in ending blood shortages by using pig blood - possibly genetically modified pig blood - for transfusions. So it is possible that pig blood might someday be used for medical transfusions, which makes it seem like pig blood is a rather good candidate for nonhuman blood that is most similar to human.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Xenotransfusion2

https://www.quora.com/Can-pigs-blood-be-used-as-a-substitute-for-human-blood3

https://nypost.com/2000/12/18/pig-to-man-blood-transfusion-may-be-just-the-start/4

| improve this answer | |
$\endgroup$
  • $\begingroup$ That hypothesis is bollocks, I'm afraid. Eugene McCarthy is a laughing stock in biology, almost a meme at this stage. $\endgroup$ – SealBoi May 15 '19 at 17:19
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ @SealBoi But the OP didn't ask about that hypothesis, but about animals with blood similar to humans, and apparently pig's blood is a good choice for non primate blood very similar to human blood. $\endgroup$ – M. A. Golding May 16 '19 at 16:56
0
$\begingroup$

Any mammal that is not a camel

Every mammal except camels (which have nucleated red blood cells) have blood that is more or less the same. The only real difference is the receptor proteins covering the blood cells' surface, and the only reason we don't use animal blood frequently in transfusions is the immune systems of the recipient don't like it because of incorrect receptor proteins and attack it. If you aren't using it for transfusion there is no reason for human blood to perform differently from any other mammal's blood unless you have some rule of magic in-universe that somehow marks human blood out as special. But from a biological standpoint human blood isn't special beyond the fact that it originally came from a bipedal, mostly hairless primate body instead of a deer, cow, or dog.

| improve this answer | |
$\endgroup$

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.