free radicals do not cause ageing.
xdcrlab at quake.net
Mon Jan 23 20:18:18 EST 1995
Thought this article might be of interest to this discussion.
VITAMIN RESEARCH PRODUCTS, INC.
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No information in this article should be taken as a recommendation. If
you have any
questions about the relationship between melatonin and your health, seek
the advice of a
MELATONIN RESEARCH BRIEFS
Article presented in the February/March 1994 edition of the VRP Newsletter
Melatonin and Aging
While melatonin has received increasing attention in both scientific
publications and the
popular media for its beneficial effects in sleep disorders, the most
promising aspect of our
expanding knowledge of melatonin's functions in the body has been greatly
This has to do with the mounting evidence that the age-related decrease in
directly affects the aging process.
A recently published paper entitled, "Melatonin, hydroxyl radical-mediated
damage, and aging: A hypothesis," goes a long way towards consolidating
the most recent
melatonin research into a promising aging theory. This paper reviews our
melatonin's role in neuroendocrine function and hydroxyl radical
concludes that, "...ageing can be regarded as a process caused by hydroxyl
pathology and melatonin deficiency." Indeed, this paper presents one of
the most exciting
and well supported aging theories ever published. The authors present
compelling research that supports their hypothesis that the age-related
decrease in nocturnal
melatonin release is central to the aging process in humans and other animals.
One of the more interesting lines of research they cover is the
relationship between dietary
restriction and melatonin. While dietary restriction is the most
experimental method that consistently yields increases in average and
research is presented suggesting that most, if not all, of the positive
effects of dietary
restriction can be elicited by melatonin administration. In fact,
compelling evidence shows
that one of the major effects of dietary restriction is the preservation
of melatonin release
with advancing age. It appears that melatonin mediates many effects of
in experimental animals. Most important is the author's conclusion that,"
treatment, unlike dietary restriction, increases life expectancy
substantially even when
introduced late in life." Other research that is presented suggests that
many centrally active
drugs that have shown promise as neuroprotective and anti-aging compounds,
deprenyl, ergot alkaloids, and acetylcarnitine, may function through their
stimulation of melatonin release.
Probably most interesting is the authors' treatment of the recent
discovery of melatonin's
antioxidant properties. The authors present evidence showing melatonin to
be the most
potent endogenous scavenger of the highly-toxic hydroxyl radical, and show
has unique antioxidant properties not shared by other antioxidants. They
"Melatonin is the most powerful and effective endogenous hydroxyl radical
detected to date, which, due to its lipophilic nature, provides on-site
protection to all
biomolecules." Indeed, melatonin is more than ten times as powerful as
acts as the primary non-enzymatic antioxidant defense against the
With the publication of this exciting paper on melatonin's potential as an
treatment, as well as compelling statements such as, "Aged animals and
melatonin deficient," there seems little question that the next few years
will see melatonin
emerge as the first safe, effective, and easy to use antiaging treatment.
In addition, the
interrelationship between dietary restriction; drugs like deprenyl,
acetylcarnitine, and ergot
alkaloids; melatonin; and the aging process present the possibility of
a common mechanism for the beneficial effect on lifespan of these
different treatments. It
is somewhat ironic that a naturally-produced substance like melatonin,
known for its
function in regulating sleep, and generally overlooked for decades, may
turn out to be most
necessary for keeping you healthy - and alive.
Reference: B. Poeggeler, et al, J Pineal Res 1993; 14: 151-168.
Mike Davis xdcrlab at quake.net
"The stupid opinions expressed here are my own and should not be construed as superior to the stupid opinions of others. EITA"
"Innovation is not dead it is merely being sat on" M.D.
"You can't order inspiration" L. Riggle Davis
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