Making Unique Observations in a Very Cluttered World

Friday, 13 December 2013

Genetic Tweaks Could Extend Human Lifespan -- To 500 Years? -

Genetic Tweaks Could Extend Human Lifespan -- To 500 Years? - 

Living to the ripe old age of 500 might be a possibility if the science shown to extend worms' lives can be applied to humans, scientists have said.
U.S. researchers tweaked two genetic pathways in the tiny lab worm Caenorhabditis elegans and boosted the creature's lifespan by a factor of five.
The research raises the prospect of anti-ageing treatments based on genetic interactions, they said.
‘What we have here is a synergistic five-fold increase in lifespan,’ said lead scientist Dr Pankaj Kapahi, from the Buck Institute of Age Research, Novato, California.

‘The two mutations set off a positive feedback loop in specific tissues that amplified lifespan. 
‘Basically these worms lived to the human equivalent of 400 to 500 years.’
While it could take years of research to extend humans’ lives dramatically, the study raises the prospect of anti-ageing treatments informed by genetic interactions, according to Dr Kapahi.
‘In the early years, cancer researchers focused on mutations in single genes, but then it became apparent that different mutations in a class of genes were driving the disease process,’ he said. 
anti-ageing treatments

‘The same thing is likely happening in ageing,’ he added.
C. elegans, the first animal to have its whole genome (or genetic code) mapped, has been widely used in studies of ageing and lifespan.
The new research, reported in the journal Cell Reports, involved blocking key molecules that affect the action of insulin and a nutrient signalling pathway called Target of Rapamycin (TOR).
Single mutations in the TOR pathway were known to extend the lifespan of C. elegans by 30 per cent, while insulin-signalling mutations could double the amount of time they lived.
Adding the two together might have been expected to extend longevity by 130 per cent, but the combined impact turned out to be much greater.
The research may explain why it has proved so difficult to identify single genes responsible for the long lives enjoyed by human centenarians.
‘It's quite probable that interactions between genes are critical in those fortunate enough to live very long, healthy lives,’ said Dr Kapahi.
Future research is expected to use mice to see if the same effects occur in mammals.
‘The idea would be to use mice genetically engineered to have suppressed insulin signalling and then treat them with the drug rapamycin, which is well-known to suppress the TOR pathway,’ Dr Kapahi said.

STUDY: Exercise just as effective as drugs in fighting major disease... - 

Exercise could be as effective as some of the best drugs which protect against major diseases, research has found.
A study of more than 300 trials has found that physical activity was better than medication in helping patients recovering from strokes - and just as good as drugs in protecting against diabetes and in stopping heart disease worsening.
The research, published in the British Medical Journal, analysed data about studies on 340,000 patients diagnosed with one of four diseases: heart disease, chronic heart failure, stroke or diabetes.
Researchers said the findings suggested that regular exercise could be "quite potent" in improving survival chances, but said that until more studies are done, patients should not stop taking their tablets without taking medical advice.
The landmark research compared the mortality rates of those prescribed medication for common serious health conditions, with those who were instead enrolled on exercise programmes.

Most of the 305 studies examined involved patients had been given drugs to treat their condition. But 57 of the trials - involving 15,000 volunteers - examined the impact of exercise as a treatment.
The research found that while medication worked best for those who had suffered heart failure, in all the other groups of patients, exercise was at least as effective as the drugs which are normally prescribed.
People with heart disease who exercised but did not use commonly prescribed medications, including statins, and drugs given to reduce blood clots had the same risk of dying as patients taking the medication.
Similarly, people with borderline diabetes who exercised had the same survival chances as those taking the most commonly prescribed drugs.
Drugs compared with exercise included statins, which are given to around five million patients suffering from heart disease, or an increased risk of the condition.
The study was carried out by researcher Huseyin Naci of LSE Health, London School of Economics and Political Science and Harvard Medical School, with US colleagues at Stanford University School of Medicine.
He said prescription drug rates are soaring but activity levels are falling, with only 14 per cent of British adults exercising regularly.
In 2010 an average of 17.7 prescriptions was issued for every person in England, compared with 11.2 in 2000.
Mr Naci said: “Exercise should be considered as a viable alternative to, or alongside, drug therapy.”
Dr John Ioannidis, the director of the Stanford Prevention Research Center at the Stanford University School of Medicine, said: “Our results suggest that exercise can be quite potent.”
Other medications compared with exercise included blood-clotting medicines given to patients recovering from stroke, and alpha-glucosidase inhibitors given to patients on the cusp of developing diabetes.
Only the patients who were recovering from heart failure fared best when prescribed drugs, where anti-diuretic medication was most effective.
However, they said their analysis found far more trials examining drugs, than those which measured the impact of exercise.
They said there was a need for more research into the benefits of exercise for those suffering from serious health problems.
Researchers stressed that they were not suggesting that anyone should stop taking medications they had been prescribed, but suggested patients should think “long and hard” about their lifestyles, and talk to their doctors about incorporating more exercise into their daily routines.


Howard Stern Contest Winner - Won Date With Prostitutes - the 86-year-old Died Minutes Before Getting Laid -

Howard Stern Contest Winner - Won Date With Prostitutes - the 86-year-old Died Minutes Before Getting Laid - 


The elderly grandpa who won a date with 2 prostitutes on the Howard Stern Show choked and died last night ... just before he was going to have sex for the first time in years ... TMZ has learned.

We've confirmed 86-year-old Johnny Orris died in a Lake Tahoe hospital last night ... after choking on his steak at a local restaurant.

Orris appeared on the Stern show back in October with his grandson ... who had entered him in a  contest called "I Want To Get My Grandpa Laid."  Orris said his wife had died more than a decade ago ... and he hadn't had sex since.  He said he fantasized about big-breasted black women.

On the show, Orris won a date with two prostitutes from the famed Bunny Ranch in Nevada ... and flew to Lake Tahoe to claim his prize.  

Bunny Ranch owner Dennis Hof tells us Orris came to the ranch last night and chose 2 gorgeous working girls he wanted to have sex with -- Caressa Kisses and Vanity.  But before consummating the date ... Orris went out for a nice dinner with his grandson, Ed.

We're told Orris ordered the steak at Sage Room Steakhouse at Harvey's Lake Tahoe ... and began to choke on it.  Ed and the maitre d' immediately began CPR ... and Johnny was transported by ambulance to a hospital where he was pronounced dead.

Hof tells us, "He just wanted a steak before having sex with Caressa Kisses and Vanity. The bunnies loved him."

And this is hilarious ... Ed tells us, he felt bad leaving the Ranch without sampling the goods -- especially after traveling so far -- so he banged one of the hookers after his grandpa died. Not Caressa or Vanity, though. That would have been weird. 

The best part ... Hof let Ed use his grandpa's coupon for one free roll in the hay.