1. Standard memberPalynka
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    09 Feb '10 10:14
    A possible link discovered between genes and ageing:

    http://blogs.nature.com/news/thegreatbeyond/2010/02/but_how_old_are_you_really_1.html

    This reminded me of Aubrey de Grey's intriguing approach to increasing lifespan by prioritizing dealing with the reasons why we age, instead of using geriatrics to stop damage from ageing from causing pathologies.
  2. SubscriberAThousandYoung
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    11 Feb '10 05:30
    Originally posted by Palynka
    A possible link discovered between genes and ageing:

    http://blogs.nature.com/news/thegreatbeyond/2010/02/but_how_old_are_you_really_1.html

    This reminded me of Aubrey de Grey's intriguing approach to increasing lifespan by prioritizing dealing with the reasons why we age, instead of using geriatrics to stop damage from ageing from causing pathologies.
    Neeto. Telomerase deficient mutants age faster looks like. My understanding was the telomere limit wasn't the cause of our lifespan - that our telomeres are long enough to last for a few hundred years - but I'm not an expert.
  3. Cape Town
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    11 Feb '10 09:29
    Clearly we all have an internal biological clock that tells our body to grow till adulthood and then age.
    I have heard of people having uncontrolled growth, but have never heard of anyone who didn't age. Whatever it is, it is clearly more than just one or two genes.

    I understand that most plants are capable of essentially living forever ie continuous cell division without sexual reproduction. I wonder if there are any animals capable of this. Maybe the secret to ageing can be found by comparing the differences between plants and animals.
  4. silicon valley
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    14 Feb '10 09:02
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Telomeres#Systemic_telomere_length_and_aging
  5. silicon valley
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    14 Feb '10 09:04
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Telomeres#Lengthening_telomeres

    Lengthening telomeres

    The phenomenon of limited cellular division was first observed by Leonard Hayflick, and is now referred to as the Hayflick limit. Significant discoveries were made by the team led by Professor Elizabeth Blackburn at the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF).

    Advocates of human life extension promote the idea of lengthening the telomeres in certain cells through temporary activation of telomerase (by drugs), or possibly permanently by gene therapy. They reason that this would extend human life. So far these ideas have not been proven in humans.

    However, it has been hypothesized that there is a trade-off between cancerous tumor suppression and tissue repair capacity, in that lengthening telomeres might slow aging and in exchange increase vulnerability to cancer (Weinstein and Ciszek, 2002).

    A study done with the nematode worm species Caenorhabditis elegans indicates that there is a correlation between lengthening telomeres and a longer lifespan. Two groups of worms were studied which differed in the amount of the protein HRP-1 their cells produced, resulting in telomere lengthening in the mutant worms. The worms with the longer telomeres lived 24 days on average, about 20 percent longer than the normal worms.[7]

    Techniques to extend telomeres could be useful for tissue engineering, because they might permit healthy, noncancerous mammalian cells to be cultured in amounts large enough to be engineering materials for biomedical repairs.

    However, there are several issues that still need to be cleared up. First, it is not even certain whether the relationship between telomeres and aging is causal. Changing telomere lengths are usually associated with changing speed of senescence. This telomere shortening, however, might be a consequence of, and not a reason for, aging.

    That the role of telomeres is far from being understood is demonstrated by two recent studies on long-lived seabirds. In 2003, scientists observed that the telomeres of Leach's Storm-petrel (Oceanodroma leucorhoa) seem to lengthen with chronological age, the first observed instance of such behaviour of telomeres.[8] In 2006, Juola et al.[9] reported that in another unrelated, long-lived seabird species, the Great Frigatebird (Fregata minor), telomere length did decrease until at least c.40 years of age (i.e. probably over the entire lifespan), but the speed of decrease slowed down massively with increasing ages, and that rates of telomere length decrease varied strongly between individual birds. They concluded that in this species (and probably in frigatebirds and their relatives in general), telomere length could not be used to determine a bird's age sufficiently well. Thus, it seems that there is much more variation in the behavior of telomere length than initially believed.

    The telomere length varies in cloned animals. Sometimes the clones end up with shorter telomeres since the DNA has already divided countless times. Occasionally, the telomeres in a clone's DNA are longer because they get "reprogrammed". The clone's new telomeres combine with the old ones, giving it abnormally long telomeres.

    In 2008, UCLA and Sierra Sciences confirmed two different small molecule compounds that activated Telomerase. Sierra Sciences, a biotechnology company in Reno, NV, has discovered a small-molecule, drug-like compound that turns on the expression of telomerase in human cells. Their scientists are presently characterizing its mechanism of action.[10] While UCLA confirmed a small-molecule extract from a plant, that turns on the expression of telomerase in human cell.[11]

    In 2008, Dr. Dean Ornish of the Preventive Medicine Research Institute (Sausalito, CA) and colleagues at the University of California at San Francisco conducted a study of 30 men with low-risk prostate cancer on the possible effects of lifestyle changes on telomeres. The findings of the study were published in The Lancet Oncology. The men were asked to make several lifestyle changes, including attending a three-day retreat; eating a diet low in refined sugars and rich in whole foods, fruits, and vegetables, with only 10 percent of calories derived from fat; and engaging in several other activities, such as moderate aerobic exercise, relaxation techniques and breathing exercises. Telomerase levels were measured at baseline, and again after three months, when researchers discovered that, in the 24 participants with sufficient data for analysis, telomerase in the blood had increased by 29 percent. The authors commented that "The implications of this study are not limited to men with prostate cancer. Comprehensive lifestyle changes may cause improvements in telomerase and telomeres that may be beneficial to the general population as well." In a cautionary note due to the limited nature of the pilot study, the authors indicated the link between lifestyle changes and increases in telomerase activity was reported as "significant association rather than inferring causation" until wider studies are completed.[12][13]
  6. SubscriberAThousandYoung
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    14 Feb '10 10:31
    Originally posted by twhitehead
    Clearly we all have an internal biological clock that tells our body to grow till adulthood and then age.
    I have heard of people having uncontrolled growth, but have never heard of anyone who didn't age. Whatever it is, it is clearly more than just one or two genes.

    I understand that most plants are capable of essentially living forever ie continuous ...[text shortened]... aybe the secret to ageing can be found by comparing the differences between plants and animals.
    Lobsters
  7. silicon valley
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    15 Feb '10 03:52
    Cover story of Time Magazine is on longevity, this week.
  8. Cape Town
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    16 Feb '10 04:55
    Originally posted by AThousandYoung
    Lobsters
    Thanks for that info. Very interesting.
  9. Subscribersonhouse
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    17 Feb '10 03:07
    Originally posted by twhitehead
    Thanks for that info. Very interesting.
    There is this Dr Sears, says he has an MD, has this procedure for about 20,000 clams that supposedly lengthens telemeres. He is in Florida and has a business selling all kinds of health food items, of which I bought two types with no noted difference. I was curious if any of his theories were worth a dam. I also wonder, if this procedure actually lengthens tele's, and it was shown to improve overall health and maybe make someone a bit younger, why isn't it on CNN or Barbara Wawa?
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