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  1. #1
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    Why Do We Age?

    This article below is one of my papers from many years ago now, actually written as an Assignment for Uni. It just happened to coincidentally be the very topic of my life focuss. Anyway, I am posting this as an introduction to my new blog which I am starting: Researched Opinion

    I hope to revise this original article eventually as well as write a well researched article on Proving Evolutionary Theory, and an Article on Morality. It is all explained in the first post of the Blog. I will probably regularly post things of interest here too if people like what I write. I hope people join in on my blog too and offer feedback and further insights as well as criticisms.

    Shane

    The Evolutionary Context of Senescence

    People have rationalised aging and the inevitability of death throughout the past as ‘only natural’, ‘For the good of the species’ or as ‘Making way for the next generation’. Taking a closer look at the evidence though quickly makes it plainly clear that these explanations are simply wrong. In a typical natural environment organisms die through predation, accident, starvation, infection and other such events long before aging becomes a factor [20]. Aging, as a general rule, has virtually no influence in the natural world, and it this fact precisely that explains how it is that aging arose in the first place.

    In 1957 Williams wrote a paper called “Pleiotropy, Natural Selection, and the Evolution of Senescence” which built on the idea introduced in 1952 by Medawar [14] that evolution would not be able to exert any real selective pressure on genes which act after the reproductive age. Williams proposed a more practical idea, that genes which produce an advantage early in life but have a later acting negative effect would still be selected regardless of the later effect. He claimed that “natural selection may be said to be biased in favour of youth over old age whenever a conflict of interest arises [20].” This theory, known as ‘Antagonistic Pleiotropy’ has since been expanded once more by Kirkwood in 1977 with the addition of the ‘Disposable Soma Theory’ [10]. This latest addition picks up on the bias natural selection has for youth and suggests that organisms evolve in a way which puts as many resources into ensuring youthful vigour and reproductive success as is required, and only after these two facets are assured do any resources get distributed into maintaining the somatic cells. In other words, evolution cannot select long living individuals if they are going to die before reproduction anyway. Evolution recognises that the body is disposable and so allocates resources appropriately.

    These theories are important because they form a basis from which investigations into the mechanisms of aging can be approached from. These theories imply that it is unlikely for there to be any genes ‘for’ aging as such, but instead there will actually be genes ‘against’ aging. They imply that the causes of aging will actually be side effects of otherwise beneficial genes. They also imply that the genes associated with longevity will actually be genes which affect the durability and maintenance of the somatic cells [11].

    The Free Radical Theory of Aging

    The Free Radical Theory of aging has become one of the main focuses of aging research today. The theory proposes that reactive oxygen species (ROS – The ‘Free Radicals’), largely produced as a side effect of normal mitochondrial metabolism, cause progressive damage resulting in the functional decline that defines aging [4]. A lot of evidence for the theory is apparent in the fact that most lab organisms which have had an increased life span, have also been shown to have an increased oxidative stress response [2][13][19].


    The overwhelming correlation between increased stress response and increased lifespan has an incredibly strong implication that ROS may cause some aspect of aging. The stress response which combats the ROS, extending lifespan, happens to be a perfect example of the expected type of relationship to form under the Antagonistic Pleiotropy theory. Aerobic metabolism undoubtedly evolved shortly after the mass extinction of most obligate anaerobes was caused by the flooding of Earth in O2 from Cyanobacteria photosynthesis. The surviving bacteria must have had some sort of oxidation resistance already, but those which utilised their existing photosynthetic electron transport chains to extract energy from the newly abundant energy source of O2 would have had a much larger advantage over its anaerobic competitors [3].


    The evolution of aerobic respiration was undoubtedly beneficial in its context and the basic control of oxidative damage was already set up, while the accumulation of damage from the occasional escaped superoxide particle was unlikely to have any noticeable deleterious effect on the quickly replicating bacteria. It isn’t until evolutionary history proceeds, conditions change, life expectancies change as complexity increases, and the small amounts of damage become increasingly important. The evolution of increasingly efficient antioxidants is the only method available to counteract this side effect of an otherwise incredibly beneficial gene.


    This hypothetical story may not be completely accurate, but the evidence does support something at least similar. Overexpression of the genes for superoxide dismutase (SOD) and catalase in Drosophila, the two primary ROS scavenging enzymes, increases lifespan by around 34% [9], demonstrating both the effect ROS may have on lifespan, as well as the importance of controlling the ROS. More interestingly, overexpression of just the human SOD1 gene increased its lifespan by 40% [9], implying the more effective scavenging ability of the human SOD enzyme which would be expected in a longer living organism. age-1 mutants in C. elegans live twice as long as the controls and were found to also increase SOD and catalse activity [9], while the Methuselah mutant Drosophila also demonstrated increased resistance to oxidative stress, high temperature and starvation, and lived 35% longer than their parent strain [13]. Both of these examples also show how counteracting the ROS may be incredibly influential in longevity.

    Having said that, an important criticism raised recently by Spencer et al [19] about the quality of specimens used for longevity comparisons may just undermine exactly how meaningful an ‘extension’ of 30-50% in lifespan may be. The breeding techniques employed in labs to maintain their stocks of Drosophila, results in a selection pressure for rapid reproduction and large litters [15]. The Disposable Soma Theory states that this would create an evolutionary pressure to direct resources to those areas at the expense of soma durability and maintenance. Spencer et al demonstrated that the extension in life from overexpression of SOD was in fact dependent on the genetic background the specimen was taken from, showing some results which had a noticeable increase in longevity, and occasional results which actually decreased longevity. Perhaps naturally living Drosophila naturally ‘overexpress’ SOD and catalase already?

    Whatever the case may be, it seems reasonable enough to accept that ROS plays a key role in aging, and Antioxidant enzymes like SOD play a key role in controlling ROS. Whether this information can be used to actually extend lifespan or improve the average quality of life in older age is far from certain, but at least we have something to work with.

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    Re: Why Do We Age?

    Other Theories on Aging

    Far from being the only theory on aging though, the Free Radical Theory is only one of many theories. There is the alternative version of the Free Radical Theory, the Mitochondrial Theory of aging, which uses the ROS idea in a vicious circle where damage to the Mitochondrion causes more ROS to be created, resulting in an exponential increase in oxidative damage [7]. This theory has lost favour in more recent times, though still attracts interest [7][16][8]. Genome Instability, the accumulation of mutations, rearrangements and changes in chromosome number have been proposed as another cause of aging [9], while an offshoot of this theory is based on the accumulation of ribosomal DNA loops which bud out of the genome then proceed to replicate themselves, growing in number and eventually causing fragmentation of the nucleolus [18]. This has only been observed in S. Cerevisiae though so has little following as a general theory of aging. Research into the WRN gene, the gene responsible for the human progeria disease Werner Syndrome, has implicated the function of DNA Helicases and their actions in suppressing DNA recombination in aging [9]. Genetic programs for aging based on genes found in C. elegans [9], accumulation of potentially harmful abnormal proteins [12], and the cell death theory which claims that gradual loss of cells in postmitotic organs eventually leads to degeneration, are all offered as aging theories. A theory of Systemic Control of aging in the body by something such as the endocrine system has been suggested with evidence from C. elegans. Apfeld and Kenyon (1998) demonstrated that a small number of mutant cells could confer increased lifespan to the entire animal [9], believing that this meant that the gene in question produced a secreted factor which dictated the pace of aging.

    An important implication from all these theories and all of the research done on these theories over the years is becoming more and more clear: It is unlikely that we are going to find ‘The’ cause of aging. Even if a systemic control factor of aging is discovered, it is unlikely to provide a simple way out of aging. Assuming we could just trick the body into behaving like it was 18 years old, we would still have to deal with the accumulation of oxidative damage, the loss of postmitotic cells, the risks of cancer, heart disease and other diseases of accumulation/degeneration.

    Telomeres

    Now implicit in the cell death theory of aging, Telomeres have gained particular notoriety as the biological clock of aging. In 1961 Hayflick and Moorhead reported the limited number of replication events human fibroblasts could go through before entering a quiescent, viable state, unable to enter further rounds of replication [6]. This number of replications was called the ‘Hayflick Limit’ and was explained in 1990 when Harley claimed that Telomeres act as the counting mechanism which limit the replication of the fibroblasts [5].

    Telomeres serve several functions in the genome, some of which include solving the “end-replication problem” [1], preventing end-to-end fusions of chromosomes, and preventing exonucleolytic degradation. Telomerase is an enzyme produced by cells which lengthens telomeres, counteracting the shortening of the end-replication problem, but it is not active in somatic cells in humans. Why not? It is most likely not active because it gives too much freedom for rogue cells to turn cancerous and threaten the entire body. The control over every individual cell by the body is incredibly important, and if a cell breaks free of that control, then the inevitable death of that cell is important.

    These functions of telomeres are all now unavoidable. As long as we have linear DNA, replicate our DNA through DNA polymerase and exist as a multicellular organism, we need telomeres. The apparent link to aging is unfortunate and stands once again as an example of Antagonistic Pleiotropy.

    Interestingly, evidence has shown oxidative damage itself may directly cause telomere shortening [17]. This fact reiterates the confusing intermingling of aging mechanisms faced by researchers, further highlighting the unlikelihood of ever finding a single ‘cause of aging’.

    Conclusion

    Understanding aging will be a matter of understanding Cell Biology as a whole. The evidence so far seems to be loud and clear that there is no such thing as a single cause of aging let a lone a single solution to it. Instead the evidence implies that aging is just an accumulation of complex side effects piled on top of each other in a somewhat random uncontrolled way, resulting in all sorts of nasty phenotypes that most just wish to avoid. Perhaps when our understanding of Cell Biology reaches a high enough level we will be able to design novel solutions for the issues which cause aging, but until that time all you can do is restrict your calorie intake and avoid standing in the middle of major roads in peak hour.

    References

    1. Alberts B, Johnson A, Lewis J, Raff M, Roberts K, Walter P. 2002. Molecular Biology of the Cell - 4th ed. Garland Science, New York, Ch. 5, Pp. 263
    2. Cabo R, Furer-Galban S, Anson RM, Gilman C, Gorospe M, Lane MA. 2003. An in Vitro Model of Caloric Restriction. Experimental Gerontology 38:631-639
    3. Campbell N, Reece J, Mitchell L. 1999. Biology (Fifth Edition) Benjamin Cummings, California. Chapter 27:511-512
    4. Golden TR, Hinerfeld DA, Melov S. 2002. Oxidative Stress and Aging: Beyond Correlation. Aging Cell 1:117-123
    5. Harley CB, Futcher AB, Greider CW. 1990. Telomeres Shorten During Ageing of Human Fibroblasts. Nature 345:458-60
    6. Hayflick L, Moorhead P. 1961. The Serial Cultivation of Human Diploid Cell Strains. Experimental Cell Research 25:585-621
    7. Jacobs HT. 2003. The Mitochondrial Theory of Aging: Dead or Alive? Aging Cell 2:11-17
    8. Jacobs HT. 2003. Rebuttal to Pak et al.: New Data, Old Chestnuts. Aging Cell 2:19-20
    9. Johnson FB, Sinclair DA, Guarente L. 1999. Molecular Biology of Aging. CELL 96 (2): 291-302
    10. Kirkwood TBL. 1977. Evolution of Aging. Nature 270:301-304
    11. Kirkwood TBL. 2002. Evolution of Ageing. Mechanisms of Ageing and Development 123:737-745
    12. Koubova J, Guarente L. 2003. How does calorie restriction work? Genes and Development 17(2):313-321
    13. Lin YJ, Seroude L, Benzer S. 1998. Extended Life-Span and Stress Resistance in the Drosophila Mutant Methuselah. Science 282:943-946
    14. Medawar PB. 1952. An Unsolved Problem of Biology. Lewis, London
    15. Miller RA, Austad S, Burke D, Chrisp C, Dysko R, Galecki A, Jackson A, Monnier V. 1999. Exotic Mice as Models for Ageing Research:Polemic and Prospectus. Neurobiol. Aging 20:217-231
    16. Pak JW, Herbst A, Bua E, Gokey N, McKenzie D, Aiken JM. 2003. Rebuttal to Jacobs: The Mitochondrial Theory of Aging: Alive and Well. Aging Cell 2:9-10
    17. Ren JG, Xia HL, Just T, Dai YR. 2001. Hydroxyl Radical-Induced Apoptosis in Human Tumor Cells is Associated With Telomere Shortening But Not Telomerase Inhibition And Caspase Activation. FEBS Letters 488:123-132
    18. Sinclair D, Mills K, Guarente L. 1998. Aging in Saccharomyces Cerevisiae. Annual Review of Microbiology 52:533-560
    19. Spencer CC, Howell CE, Wright AR, Promislow DEL. 2003. Testing an ‘aging gene’ in long-lived Drosophila strains: increased longevity depends on sex and genetic background. Aging Cell 2: 123-130
    20. Williams GC. 1957. Pleiotropy, Natural Selection, and the Evolution of Senescence. Evolution 11:398-411

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    Re: Why Do We Age?

    Great post Aegist. I'd heard of Antagonistic Pleiotropy (I didn't know thats what it was called though) and I find it very convincing, but I've never looked into the actual mechanisms behind aging. I'll add your site to favourites and I look forward to more posts.

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    Re: Why Do We Age?

    Thanks for the positive feedback. I have had this article posted for a couple of years now on imminst.com and physicspost.com. It has been a long term desire of mine to rewrite it with much more depth and research. But as usual, unless motivated, I tend to ignore researching a topic in favour of computer games etc. LOL So I need to force myself to focus and actually work on it. Hopefully by putting a public website out there I will find a motivation to force myself into it.

    First however, I want to cover evolution. Then I might get into this one second.

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    Re: Why Do We Age?

    that was a RATHER long "WINDED" way of saying......dont play in traffic!?and it doesn't matter if you DO!?hehe!!or to put it another WAY!?(a QUESTION!?,not that YOU intended IT as SUCH!?)....on what BASIS(a whole nuther discussion!?) do i ACT out my LIFE!?hehe!!just askin....

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    Re: Why Do We Age?

    Quote Originally Posted by lexx
    that was a RATHER long "WINDED" way of saying......dont play in traffic!?
    Yeah, i think the conclusion was quite weak in the original. But so was the case examples. I think the principle of the paper was spot on, but that basically comes from the 1957 paper by Williams: Pleiotropy, Natural Selection and the evolution of Senescense. SO i take no credit for that.

    In the revised version I hope to take this theory and find supporting evidence. The best way to do that would be to go looking for counter-evidence. I'll try to falsify it while trying to use it to predict possible avenues of research for lifespan extension.

    But that is a long term goal and there is a long way to go yet before I can do that.

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    Re: Why Do We Age?

    Quote Originally Posted by Gazza.
    I was wondering whether or not these ageing theories can explain the causes of the ageing disease Progreria??


    They're also very quick to state that if they can identify the gene that causes Progreria, it won't have any effect on normal ageing processes!

    I'd like to know, why not?
    Without doing some research on Progeria itself and getting right back into it (I'm all rusty on the topic already..which is the main reason I am doing this: to force myself to keep studying it) I have a few educated guesses at your two questions.

    1. The many theories of ageing would have one or two theories which would likely coincide with progeria, but probably not in a meaningful way. That is, by the sounds of how progeria works, it simply creates a whole cellular system of "not quite right' proteins. And many theories of ageing inevitably point to things which are 'not quite right'. The free-radical theory basically suggests that free radicals damage proteins and DNA causing them to stop working properly for instance. So maybe progreria just bypasses the need for external molecules to cause damage and instead produces bad proteins from the beginning.

    So in other words, understanding ageing won't necessarily help out understanding progeria because it is already clear that they both result in similar stuff (but different).

    Hmm, that was really airy fairy fluffy waffle wasn't it? Sorry, its the best I can do atm. I really need to read more don't I?

    2. The reason it won't help normal lifespan is because it is a problem none of us are faced with. In normal people, we have a gene which produces a protein which takes care of the problem faced by progeria sufferers. They simply lack that gene, or have abad version of it which causes their phenotype. It is tempting to say that what they suffer isn't 'true' ageing but more like a disease. However, at the same time I am prone to thinking that ageing is a disease too...since we don't know the true cause of ageing or at least we don't know all of them and how they work together, then its unfair to say anything isn't 'true' ageing.

    I think it is easiest to accept that any number of thousands of possible 'problems' cause the 'ageing phenotype', adn that the progeria phenotype is just one version of an accelerated ageing phenotype. Fixing that gives us normal lifespan. Because we can fix it does not necessarily mean that we can 'improve it' or anything which will cause us to live longer.

    You have to think about limiting factors and the like. The mutant gene which causes progeria becomes the limiting factor when it is broken. when it is fixed, it is no longer the limiting factor...ther are about 368 other limiting factors which kill us first.

    At a rough educated guess.

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    Re: Why Do We Age?

    Quote Originally Posted by aegist
    Yeah, i think the conclusion was quite weak in the original. But so was the case examples. I think the principle of the paper was spot on, but that basically comes from the 1957 paper by Williams: Pleiotropy, Natural Selection and the evolution of Senescense. SO i take no credit for that.

    In the revised version I hope to take this theory and find supporting evidence. The best way to do that would be to go looking for counter-evidence. I'll try to falsify it while trying to use it to predict possible avenues of research for lifespan extension.

    But that is a long term goal and there is a long way to go yet before I can do that.
    long because YOU SAY so or LONG because THEY SAY SO!?(who are they!?)hehe!!just askin...

  9. #9
    Johnny Angel Guest

    Re: Why Do We Age?

    nice article. Good reasoning.

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    Re: Why Do We Age?

    Quote Originally Posted by Johnny Angel
    nice article. Good reasoning.
    let's reveiw....a GOD claiming to be an ANGEL,named JOHNNY!?has just stated....I SUCK-UP!?hehe!!justaskin.......ARE YOU!?

  11. #11
    Johnny Angel Guest

    Re: Why Do We Age?

    Quote Originally Posted by lexx
    let's reveiw....a GOD claiming to be an ANGEL,named JOHNNY!?has just stated....I SUCK-UP!?hehe!!justaskin.......ARE YOU!?
    Make a sentence out of the following, lexxxx.





    "Freaking ARE WIERDO you A"

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    coontie is offline Vashudeva; Ferryman - doing the work... User Rank
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    Re: Why Do We Age?

    aegist: in the second paragrahph of your opening article you said: "proving

    Evolutionary Theory and an article on Morality". Did you axtually mean to

    say: an Article on Mortality?

    Just wondering. doesn't seem like the topic of Morality would necessairly

    fit in with the rest of the material.

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    Re: Why Do We Age?

    No, I meant morality. It sort of does and sort of doesn't.

    The topics are simply my own favourite topics of discussion and philosophical thought. I don't know which I I like the most, but all 3 of them intrigue me intensely. Morality possibly more than the rest because I am confident in my understanding of what it is and how to approach the topic.

    The relationship between the three topics are underlying. If you believe in evolution, then what is "Good" and what is "Bad"? Is wanting to live for ever a Good thing to want? how can you justify it?

    Morality underlies just about everything we do, if not directly, then at least in consequences of our actions. I sincerely look forward to working on the morality paper. I think I could write a whole book on the topic.

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    coontie is offline Vashudeva; Ferryman - doing the work... User Rank
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    Re: Why Do We Age?

    The good die young and young is not for a lifetime, say, of 100 years or

    even less, for ytthat matter. We begin aging as soon as we are born.

    Why? My opinion based upon some common sense observations:

    Our exposure to radiation from the Sun, Earth and what otherwise comes

    in from space has a harmful and detorating effect upon the body's

    cellurar structure, overall. Wintness, for instance, the Melonomas; skin

    cancers caused by exposure to the Sun.

    Exposure to heavy metals and othe rcelluar damaging chemicals and

    elements taken in through eating and breathing.

    Our food that we eat aids in killing us. I have often really wondered what

    our "perfect food" is; what we should really be eating. Most of the food

    we eat now leaves small amounts of residue in our cells which gradually

    builds up and blocks the viable exchange of gases an nutrients into and

    out of cells. This is NOT considering the chloroestrol, which by the way

    has proven to be uncontrolloable in some humans; their body makes

    it. Others are never bothered by it in their lifetime and eat all the fat they

    want.

    Then, physchological: a mental circumstance within out brain that

    tells us that if we all continue to live and procreate and nobody dies

    from aging, we are going to have to resort to constant mass exterminations

    of other humans in order to avoid 'standing room only' living conditions.

    There's a old movie titled "Soligen Green" wherein the humans living at

    an advanced time have extended life spans. It has been decided that

    everyone can live until a detemined age, then must die by lethal injection.

    It is depicted as a soothing, kind and gentle death, in specially construct-

    ed chambers and settings of ethereal music and beautiful, dynamic

    scenery, after a final great meal and several other requested 'memorable'

    and beautiful experiences.

    After the death, the corpses are taken to a factory where they are

    processed into a food product for the remaining, living masses. The

    food-stuff looks like large dog-food pellets and is a light green in color.

    Also, I herd a discussion on homosexuality recentely; causes, etc. In

    the discussion, it was stated that a woman having children, it has

    not been determined that her body, after so many male children,

    'programs' or sets-up to have female children. I realize there are

    exceptions, but this is what I heard. I haven't seen any actual statistics

    on this occurence. Would be interesting to see this.

    How many of you know of multiple children families where there are two

    oe three male children born to this family, then follows a female child;

    one or more?

    In my family, there was three male children first, then two female.

    In my cousins family, There was a female born first, then two males,

    then two females, then a male, then a female.

    Interesting concept anyhow.

    By the way, I am not sure of the literal truth of the matter, but in the

    O.T. Bible it states that there were certain individuals that lived many

    hundreds of years. A Man named Methusalah was said to live 100 years.

    Jacob had no children until he was what we consider now very old. ANd I

    believe he lived on several hundred years.

    ANy ideas regarding the great life span of people then?

    Also, interestingly, women are never mentioned in this regard, as well

    as seldom in other regards. It is like they didn't matter, although it

    is only through a woman that anyone is born into the world.

    But then, that's another topic, eh?

    It is pretty much common knowledge now that women, in a 'natural longevity'

    consideration, outlive men by on the average 15 years.

    Would appreciate your thoughts.
    Last edited by coontie; 08-30-2006 at 05:15 AM. Reason: sp

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    Re: Why Do We Age?

    Quote Originally Posted by coontie
    WOuld appreciate your thoughts.
    Ahhh..so many things to comment on. First things firt though: Do you intentially double space your lines? It certainly makes your posts stand out, but does make it fractionally harder to read. It hides the paragraphing structure from them somewhat and thus makes it harder tobreak your post up into sections. Just an observation.

    Quote Originally Posted by coontie
    The good die young and young is not for a lifetime, say, of 100 years.

    Why? My opinion based upon some common sense observations:

    Our exposure to radiation from the Sun, Earth and what otherwise comes

    in from space has a harmful and detorating effect upon the bodie's

    cellura structure, overll. Wintness, for instance, the Melonomas; skin

    cancers caused by exposure to the Sun.

    Exposure to heavy metals and othe rcelluar damaging chemicals and

    elements taken in through eating and breathing.

    Our food that we eat aids in killing us. I have often really wondered what

    our "perfect foor" is; wht we should relly be eating. Most of the food

    we eat now leaves small amounts of residue in our cells which gradually

    builds up and blocks the viable exchange of gases an nutrients into and

    out of cells.
    yes, the body suffers under the stresses and ravages of our environment over time. This is hardly a new observation. But thanks to biological processing, none of it is insurmountable. this is clearly shown by every new generation being born "Fresh" without any of these concerns. Clearly biology knows how to remove the damage through numerous methods.

    Quote Originally Posted by coontie
    Then, physchological: a mental circumstance withing out brain that
    tells us that if we all continue to live and procreate and nobody dies
    from aging, we are going to have to resort to constant mass exterminations of other humans in order to avoid 'standing room only' living conditions.
    "Psychological" - pet hate of mine. psych is such a commonly misspelt prefix it is remarkable.

    now the problem with population growth is hardly a "psychological problem" I can think of several much more sever psychological problems which may arise through eternal youth, and the physical problem of available space and resources for the population is not one of them.

    Mass exterminations need never be an answer to that problem in anycase. There are many preferable solutions. First things though, population explosion is already happening on earth, irrelevent of eternal youth. Do you propose now that we start mass exterminations? (no need, war does it for us) Limiting birth rights would be far preferable to killing the pre-living. Similarly this argumetn extends to people who think natural death is more acceptable than eternal youth populations. As if letting people die of natural diseases is a perfectly acceptable option. I say that if the living wish to stay alive, than they should be allowed to where possible. Why force someone who enjoys life to die in order to make way for a new baby who may or may not grow up to be suicidal, sadistic, or generally criminal.

    Thats hardly an all encompassing argument, but I don't think this is a full blown argument on the logistics of eternal youth. But it makes a brief point: Killing in order to make room for others isn't the best option available. Even if that killing is killing through inaction.


    Quote Originally Posted by coontie
    There's a old movie titled "Soligen Green" wherein the humans living at an advanced time have extended life spans. It has been decided that everyone can live until a detemined age, then must die by lethal injection.

    It is depicted as a soothing, kind and gentle death, in specially constructed chambers and settings of ethereal music and beautiful, dynamic scenery, after a final great meal and several other requested 'memorable' and beautiful expeiences.

    After the death, the corpses are taken to a factory where they are processed into a food product for the remaining, living masses. The
    food-stuff looks like large dog-food pellets and is a light green in color.
    Know of the movie, haven't seen it yet.

    Quote Originally Posted by coontie
    Also, I herd a discussion on homosexuality recentely; causes, etc. In the discussion, it was stated that a woman having children, it has not been determined that her body, after so many male children, 'programs' or sets-up to have female children. I realize there are exceptions, but this is what I heard. I haven't seen any actual statistics on this occurence. Would be interesting to see this.
    How many of you know of multiple children families where there are two oe three male children born to this family, then follows a female child; one or more?

    In my family, there was thrre males children first, then two female.
    In my cousins family, There was a female born first, then two males, then two females, then a male, then a female.
    Interesting concept anyhow.
    I think I would ahve to see some seriously good statistical data to accept that hypothesis. I know of at least one family where they had 3 daughters then 3 sons. So I haven't observed this phenomenon at all personally.

    Quote Originally Posted by coontie
    By the way, I am not sure of the literal truth of the matter, but in the O.T. Bible it states that there were certain individuals that lived many
    hundreds of years. A Man named Methusalah was said to live 100 years.
    I assume you mean 1000 years.
    Quote Originally Posted by coontie
    Jacob had no children until he was what we consider now very old. ANd I believe he lived on several hundred years.
    ANy ideas regarding the great life span of people then?
    I think its all mythology. Most mythology refers to super human lifespans.

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    coontie is offline Vashudeva; Ferryman - doing the work... User Rank
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    Re: Why Do We Age?

    Quote Originally Posted by aegist
    Ahhh..so many things to comment on. First things firt though: Do you intentially double space your lines? It certainly makes your posts stand out, but does make it fractionally harder to read. It hides the paragraphing structure from them somewhat and thus makes it harder tobreak your post up into sections. Just an observation.

    At some point I began double spacing. Guess it is a "throw-back" to

    requirement for double spacing some college papers? Don't do it to necessairly

    make my post stand out. Paraghraphing? It strikes me that this is [all

    forum comments] are strictly informal and even though I make an extra effort,

    whose grading on punctuation, sentence structure and spelling? I think

    that most people get the gist of what I am saying. Not implying anything

    regarding you! SOme people say they like the double spacing, others don't...

    There's a sone: "you cannot please everyone, but you've 'gotta please

    yourself!" ;)


    yes, the body suffers under the stresses and ravages of our environment over time. This is hardly a new observation. But thanks to biological processing, none of it is insurmountable. this is clearly shown by every new generation being born "Fresh" without any of these concerns. Clearly biology knows how to remove the damage through numerous methods.

    I don't intend or imply to offer "new observations", mostly just what I've

    experienced, observed in my liftetime - I'm 70 years old... One can learn a

    lot that is practical and factual if one remains observant. I think what I

    mentioned is, yes, common sense, but inescapable. I think ALL humans that

    are born to theis Earth will never escape the "elements" that are present

    and influence, affect ourselves, especially physically. It is as the saying

    goes: "there is always trade-offs"; advantages and disadvantages.

    I've heard, for instance, that everytime a man has sex, his life is shortened

    by one minute, or something like that. Just a mention... I don't support

    taht idea, one way or the other.



    "Psychological" - pet hate of mine. psych is such a commonly misspelt prefix it is remarkable.

    Hmmmm, nit picker eh? :D Just think, if this was what was all that was

    wrong with the world we would, with the exception of having this wrong

    prefix, be on the doorstep of Paradise. :rolleyes:

    now the problem with population growth is hardly a "psychological problem" I can think of several much more sever psychological problems which may arise through eternal youth, and the physical problem of available space and resources for the population is not one of them.

    Yeah, what I stated was enough. Past that point, especially the over-

    crowding and what would be the alternate solution, that is enough. Not

    because I said so, either!

    Mass exterminations need never be an answer to that problem in anycase. There are many preferable solutions. First things though, population explosion is already happening on earth, irrelevent of eternal youth. Do you propose now that we start mass exterminations? (no need, war does it for us) Limiting birth rights would be far preferable to killing the pre-living. Similarly this argumetn extends to people who think natural death is more acceptable than eternal youth populations. As if letting people die of natural diseases is a perfectly acceptable option. I say that if the living wish to stay alive, than they should be allowed to where possible. Why force someone who enjoys life to die in order to make way for a new baby who may or may not grow up to be suicidal, sadistic, or generally criminal.

    Hey, here's a secret... or if you're really OBSERVANT, maybe not so

    secret. Anyhow, some people know it: Whay are there wars, really? For

    population control, obviously. Isn't it interesting that historically and

    typically that MEN only, especially in the dirty, bloody in the trenches

    combat and killing, is the typical military stance of ALL civilizations.

    Seldom do the women get maimed and killed, except as an 'offshoot'

    of war's violence, where stray bombs and shells and bullests, mostly

    find the wrong intended target. Or the attacking force is savage

    enough [that's ironical, as it is really all nothing but savage and brutual]

    that they become indiscrimate and kill all in sight. But these are not

    employed military individuals. Also, noteable is that the lower classes of

    humans are typically cannon fodder, in the grinder. As the individua'

    class is elevated, their exposure to 'harms way' is ever more lessend.

    Until when you get to the uppercrust social members, they are politicans

    and corporation heads; 'people that matter', and generals. It is

    interesting that the generals, in the end, get credit for military

    victory and other accomplishments. Bottom line here... the old

    Deer Hunting season scenarion: typicall 'Bucks' [males only] selected to

    be killed. Why, in all of this? BECAUSE, one male of any species, humans

    included, of course, can fertilize, cause conception to numerous females.

    A human female typically has a gestation period of 9 months. It follows:

    more efficent population control to kill off the males than the females.

    Thats hardly an all encompassing argument, but I don't think this is a full blown argument on the logistics of eternal youth. But it makes a brief point: Killing in order to make room for others isn't the best option available. Even if that killing is killing through inaction.

    If one stands the danger, risk, danger, of being killed, either by 'accident'

    or intentionally, through wars, muder, whatever, "eternal youth" is just

    an illusion. To begin with, people that refuse toi accept the passing of

    youth and their eventual death are just people that are selfish to the

    maximum and so much in denial. They just don't want to give way to

    others and refuese to accept a common fact of human life: IMMORTALITY.

    That is the trade-off for being human. You said so, in another comment:

    the idea of extended life, especially eternal youth is just a myth, meaning

    an illusion. Face it: we that gain life, the minute we are born from the

    mother, we begin to die. Paradise WAS the womb of our mother. We

    left paradise. Came into consciousness, the world of light and sensation.

    We now are exposed to the 'natural' existing elements and all the viruses

    and bacteria and hazards. And we begin to age, right then, and the

    longer we are in the world the more we age. Yeah, I know there are

    some of you that are so into your Ego that you have a thing about

    your youth and being in the 'to die for state', but eventuially you will

    ALL have to face the old proverbial "hand-writing" on the wall. ANd don't

    be pissed with me, not my idea or under my control OR ANY OTHER HUMAN.

    Just the way things are. Everyone get older! Everyone dies! Humans

    were NOT meant to be immortal. Nothing about this Earth is immortal

    and we are literally from this Earth. Eventually, this Earth will die, as well.





    Know of the movie, haven't seen it yet.

    It has been out about thirty or so years ago now. Interesting... and who

    knows what is to come? Todays fiction could very well be tomorrows

    fact!

    I think I would ahve to see some seriously good statistical data to accept that hypothesis. I know of at least one family where they had 3 daughters then 3 sons. So I haven't observed this phenomenon at all personally.

    Could work the other way around as well. Just think, if we stopped fighting

    wars and worrying about stock options and all of our other greedy and

    ego-centered pursuits and got our heads up, paying attention to things

    for the good of the mass of humanity, which would of course benefit the

    individual, we could come to realize a lot of things that would improve our

    health, both mentally and phisically [how's that?]... We humans have been

    around on this Earth, we are not even sure how long; don't even know that

    much about ourselves... still a lot of conjecture there as well as many other

    facets of our existence. Have you considered the disease Cance? It is

    SUPPOSEDLY one of the most PAID for, as in milions of dollars of research

    money and human energy and for a very long time. Yet, we still

    have made little progress in fully understanding the disease and esepecially

    in stopping it. We are, usually, at best, mostly at the stage of going in

    and cutting the tumors out of people. Irradiation and Chemotherapy are

    most often unsucessful in curing the disease. And often, the people that

    are 'cut into' wind up dying anyhow. My sister did, after they removed

    part of a Glyoblastoma tumor from the left rear of her brain.



    I assume you mean 1000 years. Yes, that is correct. Thanks.

    I think its all mythology. Most mythology refers to super human lifespans.
    I thinkl so as well. Otherwise, their "years' were computed

    differently, say moons, instead of Suns. The Iranians still do, and many

    of the ancients, such as 'Native Americans' used the moon cycles to

    detemine time. Perhaps some method like that. Again, as I said above,

    we have to guess at and have conecture about a lot of things regarding

    ourselves as we are too busy otherwise killing one another and being

    self-centered and greedy.

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