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Want to live longer? Turn OFF autophagy - at least if you are middle aged


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Interesting finding. Antagonistic Pleiotropy strikes again. Autophagy helps the young, hurts the middle-aged and old. It might be responsible for the aging process.



Why we did not evolve to live forever: Unveiling the mystery of why we age


"Researchers at the Institute of Molecular Biology (IMB) in Mainz, Germany, have made a breakthrough in understanding the origin of the ageing process. They have identified that genes belonging to a process called autophagy -- one of the cells most critical survival processes -- promote health and fitness in young worms but drive the process of ageing later in life. This research published in the journal Genes & Development gives some of the first clear evidence for how the ageing process arises as a quirk of evolution. These findings may also have broader implications for the treatment of neurodegenerative disorders such as Alzheimer's, Parkinson's, and Huntington's disease where autophagy is implicated. The researchers show that by promoting longevity through shutting down autophagy in old worms there is a strong improvement in neuronal and subsequent whole body health."

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