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Researchers Use Genes To Slow Aging Down

Armen Hareyan's picture

Scientists have discovered a number of genes that associated with aging. Discovery will help to develop ways of slowing down aging process and cutting rates of age related illnesses.

Researchers from University of Washington in Seattle studied genes of yeast cells and nematode worms, which are primitive organisms with 1.5 billion years of evolution between them. Researchers are now trying to find genes affecting age in both organisms, to link the aging genes to human genes and block aging genes.

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Nematodes and humans are found to have more similar genes than nematodes and yeasts. Nematodes are found to have 276 genes associated with aging, 25 of these genes are present in yeasts, 15 in humans. If researchers find any genes in nematodes and yeasts affecting aging in same way, there are good chances to find similar genes in humans.

Scientists found that the genes are sensitive to food signals, so they think that a significant reduction of calories may affect aging related genes. However, such a strict diet may also lead to reduced fertility.

If the study is successful, scientists aim to develop pills that will block aging related genes without drastic changes in diet. This will prolong life span and reduce the number of aging related diseases.