Washington Post Interview With Aubrey de Grey

The Washington Post interviews biomedical gerontologist Aubrey de Grey on healthy life extension research: "Aging consists of seven critical kinds of damage, according to de Grey. For example, unwholesome goo accumulates in our cells. Our bodies have not evolved means quickly to clean up "intracellular aggregates such as lipofuscin." However, outside our bodies, microorganisms have eagerly and rapidly evolved to turn this toxic waste into compost. (De Grey made this connection because he knew two things: Lipofuscin is fluorescent and graveyards don't glow in the dark.) By taking soil samples from an ancient mass grave, de Grey's colleagues in short order found the bacteria that digest lipofuscin as easily as enzymes in our stomachs digest a steak. The trick now is getting those lipofuscin-digesting enzymes into our bodies. That has not yet been done. But, de Grey says, comparable fundamental biotechnology is already in clinical use fighting diseases such as Tay-Sachs. So he sees it as merely an engineering problem. Examples like this make up the 262 pages at the center of 'Ending Aging.'"

Link: http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2007/10/30/AR2007103002222_pf.html

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