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Who Wants to Live Forever?

 
 
JLNobody
 
  1  
Reply Fri 10 Sep, 2004 02:17 pm
Wise perspective, BBB. But, then, I would think so since it is also mine.
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iwan2no
 
  1  
Reply Fri 10 Sep, 2004 03:07 pm
I'm with you Bumble . . . I just want my final years to be healthier and more youthful so that I can enjoy them and be productive.

I have absolutely no desire to live beyond 100 years, if even that long.
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Brandon9000
 
  1  
Reply Fri 10 Sep, 2004 08:38 pm
I want to live and remain youthful as long as I possibly can. Dying holds no attraction for me.
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iwan2no
 
  1  
Reply Fri 10 Sep, 2004 09:44 pm
Brandon9000 wrote:
I want to live and remain youthful as long as I possibly can. Dying holds no attraction for me.


Well, Brandon9000, I think everyone wants to be able to live and remain youthful as long as possible. Dying has no attraction for me, either; however, dying would be preferable to living with no quality of or awareness of life.

I am curious about your age. In my opinion, as people age, they begin to fear death less because the alternative I stated above is more frightening.
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Brandon9000
 
  1  
Reply Fri 10 Sep, 2004 09:49 pm
iwan2no wrote:
I am curious about your age. In my opinion, as people age, they begin to fear death less because the alternative I stated above is more frightening.

I'm 50. If I could slow my aging down so that I lasted a thousand years, I'd jump at the chance.
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iwan2no
 
  1  
Reply Fri 10 Sep, 2004 10:17 pm
Brandon9000 wrote:
iwan2no wrote:
I am curious about your age. In my opinion, as people age, they begin to fear death less because the alternative I stated above is more frightening.

I'm 50. If I could slow my aging down so that I lasted a thousand years, I'd jump at the chance.


It is curious how attitudes about living change as one gets older. In my 40's & 50's, I was more in tune with your thinking. But, in the blink of an eye, I am in my early 60's and am faced with the reality of the current limitations of my future. Even though I have good genes and am very healthy, I still feel like a 30 year old trapped in an ageing body.

Do you actually believe your body could last 1,000 years, or would it be an assemblage of replacement parts?
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Brandon9000
 
  1  
Reply Sat 11 Sep, 2004 01:44 am
The question was what do I want. Let's keep that separate from the second question of what's possible. For the latter, I will refer you to the post with which I started the thread.
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JLNobody
 
  1  
Reply Sat 11 Sep, 2004 03:46 pm
As I age, I become less afraid of "death." This is partly because of my philosophical perspective on "death" and partly, I suspect, because I feel that I have had my share. I just celebrated my 70th birthday, and never thought I would make this far. Was it Omar Khayam (sp?) who said?

I warm both hand before the fire of life; it dies and I gladly depart.

This is a gross paraphrase, but I interpret it to say that if one feels he has had his full share of life (warms BOTH hands, not just one), he can more readily "gladly depart."
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Brandon9000
 
  1  
Reply Sat 11 Sep, 2004 04:09 pm
But why depart, if science someday offers you a way to spread your aging out over a longer period, and remian healthy through most of it? I believe that even right now adding a wide variety of antioxidants to the diet would extend it to some degree.
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paulaj
 
  1  
Reply Sat 11 Sep, 2004 04:20 pm
Jl,

That is a serene and calming perspective you have.

It invoked a peaceful visual for me.

Very nice.
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JLNobody
 
  1  
Reply Sat 11 Sep, 2004 04:44 pm
Oh, I agree, Brandon. My diet is almost hypocrondriacal. I take in so many anti-oxidants I almost glow in the dark. I do not want to die because there is so much I want to do. But it is not because I fear death (well philosophically speaking) or think death will cheat me out of my life. I have warmed both hands already.
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Magus
 
  1  
Reply Sat 11 Sep, 2004 05:07 pm
Greedily clutching at every last shred of mortal existence takes its toll on society by burdening succeeding generations... and robbing THEM of THEIR joys and THEIR Time In The Sun.

Off the shores of Connecticut there's a small island dedicated as a Wildlife Preserve.
The resident deer population has no predators and has burgeoned to the point where all the underbrush is grazed away.
Masses of emaciated sickly deer wander about, desperate for relief from the stresses of overcrowding. Observation of the herd reveals that they experience few of the joys of living that their mainland relatives enjoy.

There's a model there.

Live while you can, then die in your turn.
Make room for the next generation.
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iwan2no
 
  1  
Reply Sat 11 Sep, 2004 05:09 pm
Brandon9000 wrote:
The question was what do I want. Let's keep that separate from the second question of what's possible. For the latter, I will refer you to the post with which I started the thread.


Good point . . . It's just that this subject is so fascinating, it is easy to get carried away and delve into the implications (both positive and negative) of living "forever".
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iwan2no
 
  1  
Reply Sat 11 Sep, 2004 05:18 pm
I agree, Magus . . . To every thing there is a season.
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JLNobody
 
  1  
Reply Sat 11 Sep, 2004 05:43 pm
Magus, only another black, green-eyed cat could be so wise.
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primergray
 
  1  
Reply Mon 20 Sep, 2004 12:40 pm
Well I went on a little adventure to get the article. So I have it and I've read it, but I'm still digesting it. The tone is somewhat strange for a scientific article - almost giddy at points.

The short review: They are on to something. However, they authors are definitely not comparative zoologists or ecologists (they made a few 'doozies', I think).

Longer review later...
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primergray
 
  1  
Reply Mon 20 Sep, 2004 08:38 pm
A while back I mentioned the following article:

Gerontology. 2004 Sep-Oct;50(5):265-90.

Living and dying for sex. A theory of aging based on the modulation of cell cycle signaling by reproductive hormones.
Bowen RL, Atwood CS.

In case anyone is interested, I read it and here's what I think.

As I mentioned above the tone was somewhat strange for a journal article (for example, they quote a Dire Straits song and even list it in the Literature Cited section). Of course, If I thought I had come up with THE Theory of Aging, I might be a bit giddy, too.

Also, the review of the literature seemed sort of spotty. But that may be because the intended audience has heard it all before; perhaps the journal editors didn't want to bore the readers. I dunno. Thing is, the idea of a trade off between sexual reproduction and immortality is as old as Weissman's soma/germ division. Older, even. Why no mention?

Also, endocrine theories of aging are not exactly new either. From another paper (Morley 2003, 'Hormones and the Aging Process', JAGS 51:S333-S337): 'The concept that failure of the endocrine system may play a role in the physiologic changes associated with aging began with Brown-Sequard in the 19th century. He felt that testicular failurewas the cause of aging and conducted a series of experiments on himself, injecting testicular extracts...'

Their theory is new in that it actually describes both physiological and evolutionary mechanisms for why aging and senescence take place. It is satisfying in this regard. The theory produces an number of testable hypotheses.

The other thing I really like is that the authors provide a new way of looking at (new to me, at least) growth and development: 'Therefore, the Reproductive-Cell Cycle Theory proposes that the rate of cell proliferation, determined by the centrally produced mitogenic factors, combined with the rate of cell differentiation, determined by the peripherally produced differentiation factors, governs how quickly an animal matures and its size once maturity is reached, both of which are strongly correlated to species lifespan'.

Towards the end of the article, the authors get to the question I'd been asking since I read the abstract: 'why does reproductive function deteriorate in the first place?' They answer, ' If there were a way to decrease the rate of germ cell depletion or increase the number of viable germ cells... one shouls be able to delay senescence without decreasing growth, delaying the onset of puberty or decreasing fertility'.

So what I need is an ovary transplant???

Yes, apparently. '... compelling evidence that increasing germ cell number
extends longevity comes from a more recent study performed in mammals (rats) which revealed that transplanting reproductively viable ovaries from young rats into senescent rats significantly extended lifespan...'

So why, then, do eunuchs live longer on average than intact males?
I must be missing something.
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Magus
 
  1  
Reply Mon 20 Sep, 2004 09:52 pm
Not as much as the eunuchs are missing, I speculate.

Here's a poser... if they could prove, categorically and scientifically, that being neutered in the last stages of Puberty would triple Life Expectancy... how many people would exercise the option?

Ponder THAT.
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primergray
 
  1  
Reply Tue 21 Sep, 2004 12:06 pm
Somehow, I don't think there'd be any takers.
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Magus
 
  1  
Reply Tue 21 Sep, 2004 03:32 pm
As i maintain... "QUALITY of Life" trumps Quantity of Life.
;-)
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