Is there a way to control the aging process in our cells and stop our body and brain from growing older? According to some researchers this may be possible. Unfortunately, there are few scientists working on this project.
Researchers at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute wanted to see if, by modifying a gene expression of the telomerase enzyme known to control the length of the enzyme the aging process to reverse brain disease and premature aging. Their positive results were published in the journal, Nature.
In the study the researchers were able to reverse the effects of brain damage, where the brains were not producing new neurons, and restore a sense of smell and fertility in prematurely aging mice. They were able to find deviations in genes that protect the capped ends of chromosomes (telomeres) from age deterioration. As a byproduct of their research they believe it will not only lengthen the lifespan of a human, but allows them to be healthier and enhance their memory and mental functions.
According to Wikkipedia, â€œa telomere is a region of a repetitive DNA sequence at the end of a chromosome, which protects the end of the chromosome from deterioration or from fusion with neighbouring chromosomes.â€ When the cells divide the enzymes that duplicate the DNA are not able to complete the duplication all the way to the end of the chromosomes. In other words, duplicated DNA is not exactly duplicated, but lacking in appropriate endings.
Without the telomeres putting an end to the deterioration, the dividing cells would lose the information contained in the chromosomes. The telomeres are disposable â€œbuffersâ€ that are then replenished by an enzyme during duplication of the DNA, the telomerase reverse transcriptase, which can actually lengthen the telomeres.
An article in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences states that other researchers have found people who have reached the ripe old age of 100, and their offspring, grow much longer telomeres than the control group, and have better mental function, healthier lipid profiles, and are less prone to risks from high blood pressure, metabolic syndrome and type 2 diabetes.
The telomeres act as caps at the end of the chromosomes, preventing loss of important information. While the majority of our DNA remains the same throughout our life, telemeres can be affected by an enzyme that repairs and lengthens them (telomerase), as well as by our lifestyles and certain environmental factors.
Researchers believe the deviations they have found in the DNA of people over 100 will bring them information on how to regulate the telomerase genes and eventually be able to lengthen them in order to protect people from diseases old age brings. In the meantime they suggest you do the best you can to live a healthy lifestyle â€“ including getting enough sleep, proper nutrition and exercise and keep your mental health intact by doing brain exercises and memory techniques.
About the author:
Ron White is a two-time U.S.A. Memory Champion and memory training expert. As a memory keynote speaker he travels the world to speak before large groups or small company seminars, demonstrating his memory skills and teaching others how to improve their memory, and how important a good memory is in all phases of your life.
Memoryzine.com – Genes Protect Telomeres Boost Longevity, Cognitive Function & Memory Fitness: http://memoryzine.com/2011/03/28/genes-that-protect-telomeres-boost-longevity-cognitive-function/
Memoryzine.com â€“ Genes Used to Reverse Age-Related Brain Disease in Mice: http://memoryzine.com/2010/12/02/genes-used-to-reverse-age-related-brain-disease-in-mice/