Telomere Research

Jim Bowery jabowery at netcom.com
Wed May 18 14:43:02 EST 1994

I understand that telomeres are believed to be noncoding
sections of the chromosomes, but what is the evidence
for this other than the fact that they appear to serve
no purpose?

Also, since telomerase functions appropriately in cell
division in some cell production (gametes for example)
why is it that it cannot also function appropriately in
the division of other cells?  The incidence of cancer
in cells that naturally utilize telomerase doesn't
appear to be nearly as enormous as one would expect.
Is eovoking telomerase in normal cells really that
dangerous or would our other mechanisms for control
of cancer control be adequate given a youthful 
immune system?

In cases where those other cancer suppression 
mechanisms fail, is it unreasonable to expect that
a telomerase antagonist might be developed to kill
cancerous cells?

Inquiring minds want to know (if ours will be the last
 generation to die of "old age").
The promotion of politics exterminates apolitical genes in the population.
  The promotion of frontiers gives apolitical genes a route to survival.

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