On Wed, 02 Sep 1998 18:14:30 -0700, Tom Matthews <tmatth at netcom.ca>
>True, but there are many things which *could* be the cause of various
>aging attributes! However, what we need to concentrate on right now is
>what *is* the cause of even the most healthy people dying before age
You are most certainly correct. There are probably many different
things that cause age related dieases or attributes. But we do know
ONE THING for CERTAIN.
If a human did not get all of his dividing cells immortalized then
"eventually", whether it took 100, 500, or 1000 years, his or her
cells woud lose their telomeres, become senecent, and eventually die.
So we know for a FACT that telomeres and telomerase is INVOLVED in
aging (either in perhaps 60 year old humans or, perhaps, only humans
that are 5000 years old or older) and is a limiting factor of the
human life span. Also we know that unless a human had all of his
dividing cells "immortalized" by having telomerase activated then he
could not stay "young" forever.
What we need to do research to discover is just how applicable
telomere shortening is to the aging process of humans between the age
ranges of around one to one hundred years old.
If telomere shortening is very applicable to the human aging process
in humans within the current average life span range then we need to
focus on telomeric therapys to reverse or slow aging.
But, if telomere shortening is NOT very applicable to the human aging
process in humans of the current average life span then we need to
focus on OTHER ways to prevent the aging that occurs that is not a
result of shortened telomeres.
I totally agree with you Tom Matthews. We need to figure out whether
telomerere shortening is a major factor of human aging in people with
normal current life spans.
>>Certainly, *if* cell senescence or even simply telomere shortening is
>shown to be the cause of *some* aspect of aging decline, we could start
>off with telomerase therapy for only those cells types, not *all*
Well, if we discovered that immortalizing all the human cells in the
body would not cause cancer or other problems then I would say just go
ahead and immortalize all of them.
At least then the cells that do have short telomeres now will be
restored and down the road, after many more divisions, when others may
or may not develope short telomeres, they will be protected as well.
>This is a reasonable way of looking at aging, IMO, except that we *know*
>that mitochondrial mutations and free radical damage (and AGE
>accumulation and many other things) *are* causal factors in normal
>aging, whereas we do *not* know that telomere shortening is.
Well, I believe that there is more than enough evidence to prove that
telomere shortening is a factor in human aging. What needs to be
determined is whether telomere shortening starts causing problems
after 100, 200, or 1000 years.
I have no doubt that AGE accumilation, mitocondrial mutations, and
free radicals cause many problems and age related diseases. But even
if we totally eliminated all three of the above then people would not
live forever because, eventually, their telomeres would shorten and
they would have an accumilation of senecent cells, and eventually die.
But what would be interesting is if telomere shortening is not a
problem until a person would reach around 500 years of age then by
perhaps eliminating all of the above factors that you mentioned people
could live long enough to worry about their telomeres shortening.
>>Again quite true, but neither progeria nor Werner's are diseases *of*
>aging and neither may have anything to do with stopping normal aging.
Thanks for responding to my post. I appreciate it very much.
Have a great day.
(I fear that in a hurry I might have posted "God Bless You" in a
previous post recently. If I did so I apologize to any atheists that
may have read the post. I did it by accident, if I did it, because I
was thinking too fast and was in a hurry.)
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