LATEST UPDATES » Vol 22, No 03, March 2018 – Women in Science - Making a difference       » Brain aging in ASEAN       » Chinese scientists find antidote to centipede venom       » Measuring the risks and rewards of drug development       » Ketone drink could help diabetics by lowering blood sugar       » What value-based healthcare means for Asia       » Improve healthcare access to tackle Asia's healthcare challenge      
Searching for the fountain of youth

At aged nine, I first understood the meaning of ageing and death when my grandfather passed away. At nine, I realised humans cannot be immortal and I became fearful of growing up (old). Ageing is the process of changes occurring in cells and tissues with advancing age, that are responsible for the increased risk of disease and death.

The cause of ageing has been studied intensely. There is never a single cause of ageing, but rather combining many theories of ageing, complementary of others. One theory is that DNA damage is often the common basis of both ageing and cancer. Genetic damage, mutations, and epimutations, can cause abnormal gene expression. The DNA damage causes the cells to stop dividing or induces apoptosis (cell death), which then hinders regeneration. Other theories of ageing include the inflammation theory, immunologic theory and the mitochondrial theory.

Ageing is inevitable. The world’s population is ageing, which brings unprecedented challenges to the world’s economy and society.

Many companies out there are rushing to get a slice of this 'anti-ageing' market to develop the next diet, next drug, next treatment. Companies like Unity Biotechnology are working on triggering the death of senescent cells’, which secrete proteins that cause inflammation and causes the immune system to turn against normal tissues and damage them. This drug aims to treat osteoarthritis of the knee. But they also face issues like the fact that senescent cells play a role in wound healing as well as preventing cancer (cells go into senescence to avoid become cancerous).

There have also been studies showing that caloric restriction in mice can extend lifespan and delay the onset of certain diseases. But it is not known if caloric restrictions are effective in humans.

Understanding the ageing process is difficult and interventions are just beginning to sprout.

With all this talk about ageing, genes account for just 25 percent of longevity. The other 75 percent is lifestyle. Susan Pinker, a Canadian psychologist, shared in her 2017 TED talk that the secret to living longer may be our social life. The list goes (from the least priority to the most priority in helping us live longer): clean air, hypertension risk, weight gain, exercise, cardiac rehabilitation, flu vaccine, quitting alcohol, quitting smoking, close relationships and social integration. The top two indicators of living longer are features of our social life. First, our close relationships which are people you can call on for help, people who will stay with you in a crisis. Second, social integration is an indicator of how much we interact with people around us throughout our day; the barista, cleaner, postman. These social interactions are one of the strongest predictors of how long we’ll live.

So, time to start rekindling those connections and age better.

Lim Guan Yu
APBN Editor
You can reach me at gylim@wspc.com


You can always access all APBN's issues on our website: www.asiabiotech.com.
Check us out at Facebook @Asia Pacific Biotech News, Instagram @asiabiotech, or follow us on Twitter @asia_biotech.

Click here for the complete issue.

news Shire, Microsoft and EURORDIS form Global Commission to accelerate time to diagnosis for children with rare diseases
news EmTech Asia explores future of life, humanity and economy
news Biology of Ageing II - Impactful Interventions
Asia Pacific Biotech News

Lady Ganga: Nilza'S Story
Subscribe to APBN E-Newsletter
Find us under 'Others' option to receive APBN e-newsletters thrice a month!

APBN Editorial Calendar 2018
Obesity / Outlook for 2018
Searching for the fountain of youth
Women in Science - Making a difference
Digestive health / Intellectual property
Asthma / Dental health
Oncology / Biotech landscape in APAC
Water management / Vaccination
Regenerative medicine / Biotech start ups
Digital healthcare / 3D printing
Bones / Breast cancer
Liver health / Top science research nations & institutions
AIDS / Breakthrough of the year/Emerging trends
Editorial calendar is subjected to changes.
About Us
Available issues
Editorial Board
Letters to Editor
Instructions to Authors
Advertise with Us
World Scientific Publishing Co. Pte. Ltd.
5 Toh Tuck Link, Singapore 596224
Tel: 65-6466-5775
Fax: 65-6467-7667
» For Editorial Enquiries:
   biotech_edit@wspc.com or Ms Lim Guan Yu
» For Subscriptions, Advertisements &
   Media Partnerships Enquiries:
Copyright© 2018 World Scientific Publishing Co Pte Ltd  •  Privacy Policy