By Robin Holliday
For hundreds of years humans were questioned by means of the inevitability of human getting older. for many of the second one half the 20 th century getting older remained a secret, or an unsolved organic challenge. on the finish of the 20 th century a amazing medical discovery emerged. It was once now not a unmarried discovery within the ordinary feel, since it used to be in response to a sequence of vital interconnected insights over really an extended time period. those insights made it attainable for the first actual time to appreciate the organic purposes for getting older in animals and guy. it could possibly already be stated, notwithstanding, that the numerous observations and insights that specify getting older aren't accredited as tested wisdom for a very long time. the sector continues to be jam-packed with scientists, and non-scientists, who're simply satisfied to head on speculating concerning the 'mystery' of getting older. the purpose of this booklet is to dispel lack of information by way of explaining in non-technical language what are the explanations for getting older and the parable of over the top prolongation of existence.
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Additional info for Aging: The Paradox of Life
In fact, the history of this field of study is characterised by the overstatement of the importance of each theory. Thus, the proposer of a particular theory often claims that it explains the whole of ageing. What is striking that each theory can usually related to a particular cause of ageing, or to a failure of one of the maintenance mechanisms summarised in Chapter 3. For example, the somatic mutation theory proposes that changes in DNA are the cause of ageing. The mitochondial theory of ageing is even more specific in that is asserts that the loss of mitochondrial function is the cause of ageing.
Sooner or later ageing and death supercede reproduction. It has sometimes been argued that some large fish or reptiles do not age in the usual sense. These long-lived animals usually increase in size throughout their lifespan, in other words, they have pools of dividing cells that keep growing and slowly increasing body weight. Nevertheless, the long survival time of a giant tortoise or large fish such as a whale shark, is still only a minute fraction of evolutionary time. It may well be that size itself is one determining factor of lifespan.
Curiously, he never seemed to discuss ageing. It is curious, because it is just those features of natural populations which he seized or in this theory of natural selection, that also explains the evolution of ageing in animal populations. I previously described the roundworm as a simple animal, which it certainly is, but it is also highly specialised in its lifestyle. The important point, however, is that all types of animals find themselves in hostile environments, which produce age-structured populations.
Aging: The Paradox of Life by Robin Holliday