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Means to an End : Biological Basis of Aging

Means to an End : Biological Basis of Aging - 99 edition

ISBN13: 978-0195153750

Cover of Means to an End : Biological Basis of Aging 99 (ISBN 978-0195153750)
ISBN13: 978-0195153750
ISBN10: 0195153758
Cover type: Print On Demand
Edition/Copyright: 99
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Published: 1999
International: No

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Means to an End : Biological Basis of Aging - 99 edition

ISBN13: 978-0195153750

William R. Clark

ISBN13: 978-0195153750
ISBN10: 0195153758
Cover type: Print On Demand
Edition/Copyright: 99
Publisher: Oxford University Press

Published: 1999
International: No
Summary

Why do we age? Is aging inevitable? Will advances in medical knowledge allow us to extend the human lifespan beyond its present limits? Because growing old has long been the one irreducible reality of human existence, these intriguing questions arise more often in the context of science fiction than science fact. But recent discoveries in the fields of cell biology and molecular genetics are seriously challenging the assumption that human lifespans are beyond our control.

With such discoveries in mind, noted cell biologist William R. Clark clearly and skillfully describes how senescence begins at the level of individual cells and how cellular replication may be bound up with aging of the entire organism. He explores the evolutionary origin and function of aging, the cellular connections between aging and cancer, the parallels between cellular senescence and Alzheimer's disease, and the insights gained through studying human genetic disorders--such as Werner's syndrome--that mimic the symptoms of aging. Clark also explains how reduction in caloric intake may actually help increase lifespan, and how the destructive effects of oxidative elements in the body may be limited by the consumption of antioxidantsfound in fruits and vegetables. In a final chapter, Clark considers the social and economic aspects of living longer, the implications of gene therapy on senescence, and what we might learn about aging from experiments in cloning.

This is a highly readable, provocative account of some of the most far-reaching and controversial questions we are likely to ask in the next century.

Author Bio

Clark, William R. : University of California-Los Angeles

Professor Emeritus of Immunology at UCLA and internationally recognized authority on cellular immune reactions, William R. Clark is the author of The New Healers: Molecular Medicine in the Twenty-First Century, Sex and the Origins of Death, and At War Within: The Double Edged Sword of Immunity, all published by OUP.

Table of Contents

1. Aging, Senescence, and Lifespan
2. The Nature of Cellular Senescence and Death
3. The Evolution of Senescence and Death
4. Of Embryos and Worms and Very Old Men: The Developmental Genetics of Senescence and Lifespan
5. Human Genetic Diseases That Mimic the Aging Process
6. Cycling to Senescence
7. Replicative Immortality: Cancer and Aging
8. Caloric Restriction and Maximum Lifespan
9. With Every Breath We Take: Oxidative Stress and Cellular Senescence
10. The Aging Brain
11. A Conditional Benefit
Bibliography
Index

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