Science Current Events | Science News | Brightsurf.com
 

Research breakthrough on the question of life expectancy

August 05, 2010

Why do we grow old and what can we do to stop it? This is the question asked by many, but it appears that we are now closer to an answer thanks to new research published by Monash University researcher Dr Damian Dowling.

According to the research published in the August edition of the prestigious journal, The American Naturalist, a small set of genes in mitochondria (a membrane-enclosed organelle found in most eukaryotic cells), passed only from mothers to offspring, plays a more dynamic role in predicting life expectancies than ever previously anticipated.

The research discovered that particular mitochondrial haplotypes were linked to the life expectancies of females in the beetle species Callosobruchus maculatus.

"What we found in these beetles that some combinations of mitochondrial and nuclear genomes confer long life in virgin females, but these are not the same combinations that result in long life in females that mate once, or in females that mate many times," Dr Dowling said.

"Clearly, the genetic determinants underlying life expectancies are complex.

"As we unravel this complexity, we draw closer to the day in which we might use the genetic information encoded in the mitochondria to assist in the development of therapies that slow the onset of ageing in humans," Dr Dowling said.

In animals, most of the genetic material that controls bodily functions is found inside the cell nucleus. This is the nuclear genome - it is passed on from generation to generation through both mothers and fathers, and it encodes somewhere between 14 thousand and 40 thousand proteins.

However, a separate genome exists that is found only within the energy-producing factories of our cells - the mitochondria. To put things in perspective, the mitochondrial genome is tiny, encoding just 13 proteins. Despite being so small, it can pack a punch when it comes to its ability to affect a range of fundamental biological processes.

Dr Dowling, a research fellow at Monash University's School of Biological Sciences led the research together with Goran Arnqvist of Uppsala University Sweden and their student, Tejashwari Meerupati, made the discovery.

"Our findings are part of a much broader research agenda in which we are elucidating the ways in which mitochondrial genomes have shaped our evolutionary past and present. What we are finding is that natural variation in this diminutive genome results in a huge range of effects on metabolism, mating behaviour and reproductive biology, including male fertility," Dr Dowling said.

"At the outset of our research program, we suspected that the evolutionary significance of the mitochondria had probably been underestimated by scientists that have come before us, but even we have been continually surprised by the magnitude and ubiquity of the effects that we have uncovered.

"We suspect that this genome still harbours many more secrets awaiting discovery," Dr Dowling said.

Monash University


Related Life Expectancy Current Events and Life Expectancy News Articles


The mysterious sexual life of the most primitive dragonfly
The dragonfly considered the most primitive in the world lives in Australia and Tasmania, and was believed to be extinct four decades ago.

Women cooking with biomass fuels more likely to have cataracts
Women in India who cook using fuels such as wood, crop residues and dried dung instead of cleaner fuels are more likely to have visually impairing nuclear cataracts, according to a new study published in the journal Environmental Health Perspectives.

Is aging inevitable? Not necessarily for sea urchins
Sea urchins are remarkable organisms. They can quickly regrow damaged spines and feet.

Exercise, future anticancer therapy?
At age 70, Alfred Roberts plays hockey twice a week. Nothing special, right? Except that for three years he has had advanced prostate cancer, which has spread to his bones.

Loss of Y chromosome in blood cells associated with developing Alzheimer's disease
Men with blood cells that do not carry the Y chromosome are at greater risk of being diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease.

Cutting-edge findings in cannabis research
New evidence for the clinical efficacy of cannabis therapy is presented in the latest issue of the Journal of Basic and Clinical Physiology and Pharmacology (JBCPP), a De Gruyter publication. The authors have studied cannabis therapy for many years at international research centers, examining its effects, potential applications, and risks.

A slick way to test artificial knees and hips
A new study suggests that natural proteins can be used to effectively test new replacement hip and knee joints in the laboratory.

Queen's scientists develop new treatment to prolong life of those with cystic fibrosis
Scientists at Queen's University Belfast have discovered a new molecule which has the potential to prolong the life of individuals with cystic fibrosis (CF).

Frequency of extreme heat waves on the increase in Africa: Could occur annually by 2040
Longer, hotter, more regular heat waves could have a damaging effect on life expectancy and crop production in Africa warn climate scientists in a study published in the journal Environmental Research Letters.

Computer model helps physicians prescribe stroke preventing therapy
Physician-researchers in the College of Medicine at the University of Cincinnati have developed a computerized decision support tool that uses a combination of patient information and characteristics to assist physicians and patients with decisions about blood thinning treatment to prevent strokes in individuals with atrial fibrillation.
More Life Expectancy Current Events and Life Expectancy News Articles

Life Expectancy: A Novel

Life Expectancy: A Novel
by Dean Koontz (Author)


NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER
 
Before he died on a storm-wracked night, Jimmy Tock’s grandfather predicted that there would be five dark days in his grandson’s life—five dates whose terrible events Jimmy must prepare himself to face. The first is to occur in his twentieth year, the last in his thirtieth. What terrifying events await Jimmy on these five critical days? What challenges must he survive? The path he follows will defy every expectation and will take all the love, humor, and courage he possesses. For who Jimmy Tock is and what he must accomplish on the five days his world turns is a mystery both dangerous and wondrous.

Life EXPECTANCY: It's Never Too Late to Change Your Game

Life EXPECTANCY: It's Never Too Late to Change Your Game
by William Keiper (Author)


"If you only get to read one book this year, be sure it is Life EXPECTANCY... It will alter what you do with the rest of your life." ~Steve Hardison, The Ultimate Coach This book is the BOOMER MANIFESTO we've been waiting for.  Many aging Americans find themselves in a very precarious situation at just the time in their lives when they most want and need to feel secure. Life EXPECTANCY delivers the truth for those in the boomer generation who assumed they could be relatively passive for their last twenty or so years of life.

For many, retirement is off the table and the Golden Years could be the years of greatest financial worry. Life EXPECTANCY tells the hard truth about the financial challenges facing Americans now and in the decades ahead and urges a new form of...

Rising Life Expectancy: A Global History

Rising Life Expectancy: A Global History
by James C. Riley (Author)


Between 1800 and 2000 life expectancy at birth rose from about 30 years to a global average of 67 years, and to more than 75 years in favored countries. This dramatic change was called a health transition, characterized by a transition both in how long people expected to live, and how they expected to die. Rising Life Expectancy examines the way humans reduced risks to their survival, both regionally and globally, to promote world population growth and population aging.

Dean Koontz Life Expectancy Hardback with Dust Cover

Dean Koontz Life Expectancy Hardback with Dust Cover
by Dean Koontz (Author)


Book

Life Expectancy

Life Expectancy
by HarperCollins e-books


In Girl Trouble, acclaimed writer Holly Goddard Jones examines small-town Southerners aching to be good, even as they live in doubt about what goodness is.A high school basketball coach learns that his star player is pregnant--with his child. A lonely woman reflects on her failed marriage and the single act of violence, years buried, that brought about its destruction. In these eight beautifully written, achingly poignant, and occasionally heartbreaking stories, the fine line between right and wrong, good and bad, love and violence is walked over and over again.In "Good Girl," a depressed widower is forced to decide between the love of a good woman and the love of his own deeply flawed son. In another part of town and another time, thirteen-year-old Ellen, the central figure of "Theory of...

Life Expectancy in Court: A Textbook for Doctors and Lawyers

Life Expectancy in Court: A Textbook for Doctors and Lawyers
by T. W. Anderson (Author)


Life expectancy is an important issue in cases of serious personal injury. This book explains how to calculate life expectancy, and how to avoid common mistakes and misunderstandings. Basic concepts are illustrated with data from studies involving a wide range of conditions, including alcoholism, cerebral palsy, colon cancer, diabetes, and spinal cord injury (tetraplegia). There are also case studies of three of the major topics in life expectancy—cerebral palsy; traumatic brain injury; and tetraplegia. The chapters are user-friendly, with extensive use of visual aids such as graphs and tables. The subject of epidemiology is at the heart of the methods that are discussed, and additional reading sources are suggested for those readers who would like to learn more about this important...

Livstid [Life Expectancy]

Livstid [Life Expectancy]
by Word Audio AB


Jimmy Tock kommer till världen samma kväll som hans farfar lämnar den. Medan en våldsam storm rasar, tillbringar hans far Rudy långa timmar i korridorerna mellan förlossningsavdelningens väntrum och sin döende fars sjukbädd. Det är en underlig vaka som blir än underligare när Josef Tock plötsligt sätter sig käpprakt upp och talar sammanhängande för första och sista gången efter sin stroke. Det han säger innan han dör är att hans sonsons liv kommer att innehålla fem fruktansvärda dagar, fem datum med hemska händelser som Jimmy behöver förbereda sig på. Det första ska ske under hans tjugonde år och det sista det år han fyller trettio.Rudy avfärdar sin fars sista ord som en döende mans förvirrade prat. Men när han upptäcker att fadern också förutsåg sin...

Life Expectancy: Short story

Life Expectancy: Short story


A short story about the effects terminal illness can have on the person and their family. A tragic story that pulls at the toughest of heart strings. Emotional and powerful.

Diet, Life Expectancy, and Chronic Disease: Studies of Seventh-Day Adventists and Other Vegetarians

Diet, Life Expectancy, and Chronic Disease: Studies of Seventh-Day Adventists and Other Vegetarians
by Gary E. Fraser (Author)


Research into the role of diet in chronic disease can be difficult to interpret. Measurement errors in different studies often produce conflicting answers to the same questions. Seventh-day Adventists and other groups with many vegetarian members are ideal study populations because they have a wide range of dietary habits that adds power and clarity to research findings. This book analyzes the results of such studies, focusing on heart disease and cancer. These studies support the benefits of a vegetarian diet and in addition provide evidence about the effects of individual foods and food groups on disease risk that is relevant to all who are interested in good health. Fraser places the findings in athe broader context of well-designed nutritional studies of the general population. ...

Life Expectancy - 14 days

Life Expectancy - 14 days
by Jennifer M. Carr


This is a fictitious novel set in 1940. After Dunkirk, Hitler decided to implement Operation Sealion, the invasion of Britain. It tells the story of this invasion and of a team of Auxiliary Home Guard. These Auxiliaries were left behind by the British government to fight the Germans from within, but the Senior Officers of these men believed that it was a suicide mission and that they would be dead within 14 days.
Matt Fletcher was the officer in command of 5 men who initially had to stay in a bunker in Sussex, whilst the German and British armies fought. The German army progressed on up the country eventually taking London. Matt and his men sabotaged Bridges, Troop convoys to the front and goods yards containing equipment and weapons, along with capturing weapons and killing...

© 2016 BrightSurf.com