The EU Green Paper on Aging Ignores the Role of Medical Research in the Future of Aging

Governments and large international entities have in many cases published quite expensive and detailed positions on aging. They commonly urge individual and collective action based on the impending collapse of entitlement systems due to changing demographics. The growing number of older people relative to the size of the population as a whole makes pensions, government-run health systems, and the like, increasingly unsustainable in their present form. Something must change. That change must be the development and widespread deployment of therapies to treat the underlying mechanisms of aging, so as to slow and reverse the process of aging. Sadly that is the one approach to the challenge that never appears in these proposals, following the lead of the WHO's 2015 World Report on Aging and Health and 2020 Decade of Healthy Aging, which interventions to slow and reverse aging are not mentioned. The EU Green Paper on Aging discussed here is similarly entirely blind to the role of medical research in the future of aging.

"The Green Paper on Ageing highlights the importance of healthy and active ageing and lifelong learning as the two concepts that can enable a thriving ageing society. Active ageing necessitates promoting healthy lifestyles throughout our lives, including consumption and nutrition patterns, as well as encouraging physical and social activity. Lifelong learning means a constantly acquiring and updating of skills helping people to remain employable and succeed in job transitions."

Active ageing and lifelong learning are important, obvious, and attractive ideas but we would argue that without really addressing the underlying problem of accelerated biological aging and functional decline giving rise to the fundamental problem related to the demographic challenges promoting these ideas alone and proposing them as the remedy is akin to trying to build a house without a foundation.

The three biggest problems of the current Green Paper on Ageing are all rooted in the missed opportunity of learning from and applying the latest biomedical, scientific and technological results. This way the potential effect of this most decisive scientific and technological trend is rendered invisible concerning the changing demographics and hence actually and actively downplaying the role science and technology might play in the long term permanent solution.

1. The Green Paper on Ageing is missing the elephant in the room behind changing demographics affecting Europe (and the world): the real, life-compromising burden of accelerated biological aging in the second half of life, already present in middle age, and reaching its climax in older people.

2. The Green Paper on Ageing appears oblivious to science's current view on the malleability of the biological aging process, and the already mainstream translational geroscience paradigm that offers an interventionist approach to potentially slow, stop, reverse, or rejuvenate these aging processes in order to significantly increase healthy human lifespan.

3. Due to the previous 2 points the Green Paper on Ageing ignores the primary long-term policy solution of the demographic challenge: supporting the focused development and equitable access of science-intensive healthy longevity technologies for all EU citizens.



Hi there! Just a 2 cents.

''Active ageing and lifelong learning are important, obvious, and attractive ideas but we would argue that without really addressing the underlying problem of accelerated biological aging and functional decline giving rise to the fundamental problem related to the demographic challenges promoting these ideas alone and proposing them as the remedy is akin to trying to build a house without a foundation.''

Talk about throwing the bathwater out with the baby.

''Active ageing and lifelong learning.''

Total misnomer.

You don't learn, you Unlearn/Delearn/Degrade/Degress & Regress when you write stuff like that.
And don't realize.

It's almost like saying: '''s the best thing since slice bread and kewl-aid''...''Eat it up and Drink it up''. In other words...'lap it up.

How can they write like now surpasses me and leaves me in awe (in the bad sense).

Nothing cool or kewl about it, trust me, or rather, it's absolutely - Cool/Chill - when your body is
like that - dead (cold) - in 'stationnary flat on back/ground position'.

Active ageing...oh boy. We're not out of the woods, the Houston woods.

''Houston...... ..... ..... we have a problem''.

Aging = Deactivate - You.

Active...they of course meant 'healthy aging and 'staying active/fit/exercise/ doing/stuff/working/not becoming decripit/not thinking you will die soon because old/not become depress of being old/(quality) 'living' in other words/staying young and healthy in mind and body. that sense I understand...but it's one more buzzword to downplay (and divert/confuse the audience that) the aging, itself, - which is bad. Always 'spinning' it in a good light.
I don'T blame them...they are just trying to 'alleviate' the 'direness' of death/aging.
Downplay it all.

Except they should not, and make people, wake up and realize that no aging is not cute or fun or anything remotely nice; I hear sometimes people say: ''I can't wait 'to age' and be 50...I'm currently 30..and can't wait to be Mature....''.
''I'm 50...I can't wait to be be senior and a grand-pa/grand-ma''...

That's the problem. IT's ok to feel 'to want to 'Mature' Mature'...with old grey silver hair...and all the jazz of someone with lots of life/experience/old...wisdom/maturity/etc that come with 'old age'''
But, the problem is, once it happens, soon -after- you die.

We should not have to die and it be a 'summum/life summum' at that point..and then you petter out/die just after. Why could we not have Many life summums...hitting the big 100, hitting the big 150, the 200, 250...etc...why does it MUST end.
Oh I forgot...''overpopulation, pollution, costly to keep foreveraging people alive, earth resources gone (from abuse by godzillions of overpopulation), it's a cycle to keep low population number, bored out living too long, want to decripit for 1000 years - we did not think so, you must do good and die/be replaced, don't be selfish/teenager (egothing), everyone dies - so you too - on time, we all age - it is a Must - in life - then we die - at 120 - it is Decided - 120 is the number, etc etc etc''.

Just a 2 cents.

PS: EUROPE wake t f UPE.

Posted by: CANanonymity at April 23rd, 2021 3:36 PM

EU is slowly degrading. This is bad. Nobody with a bit a sanity would ignore the advances in science and biotechnology to this degree. I already decided to leave EU because I don't see great opportunities to research aging. This just reassures me, that EU is doomed.

Posted by: laguy at April 24th, 2021 3:24 AM

Probably the main reason is that there are no well-founded preclinical treatments for aging yet. There are too many bubble-blown sensations (like growth hormone therapy) that burst when trying to introduce them into medicine. Can anyone list the methods of aging therapy that can really slow down aging or rejuvenate in the long term. Therapy with rapamycin, metformin, some dietary supplements (the benefits of which have not yet been clearly proven), stem cells from iPSCs, this is the whole scarce repertoire of interventions in addition to healthy lifestyle. Is it worth taking offense at the bureaucrats after that?

Posted by: Dmitry Dzhagarov at April 24th, 2021 11:30 PM

Someone can answer the question why a whale or a turtle live much longer than a mouse. Why do they have a slower epigenetic clock and metabolism, unlike mice? Until there is a clear answer to this question, it makes no sense to talk about a real therapy for aging.
Look and think:
Cross-species comparisons and in vitro models to study tempo in development and homeostasis
Interspecies chimeric conditions affect the developmental rate of human pluripotent stem cells.
Species-specific pace of development is associated with differences in protein stability
Humans develop more slowly than mice because our chemistry is different
Uncovering the clock that sets the speed of embryo development

Posted by: Dmitry Dzhagarov at April 24th, 2021 11:46 PM

@Dimitry, And humanity always stopped at the first obstacle. Like no human life is imaginable on the surface of the Mars, so we should give it up. Quantum computers are still a myth. Like fusion reactors also working in experimental conditions. Fortunately bureaucrats not always short sighted. Take no offense, I am not arguing that there are only hints that it's possible to extend healthy lifespan. I am just not going to accept that their decision is just, right and logical.

Posted by: laguy at April 25th, 2021 7:11 AM

Actually, I also read a bunch in this topic. I encountered a very good article from 2014:
This explains a lot about epigenetics and telomere. I had the idea before, that even when epigenetic clock is reverted, it should start ticking again and faster, since nobody extended the lifespan of a mouse very much yet. So there should be a "pacemaker" for the epigenetic clock. Or should we say, an interval for potential maximum life, that also defines the epigenetic aging. Thank you for the literature, and I hope you didn't read this one yet.

Posted by: laguy at April 25th, 2021 4:22 PM

Hi Dmitry! Just a 2 cents.

Essentially, the answer is found in the links you provided, a whale or turtle live longer than a mouse because they have different cell environment, different specie blue-print/master plan...

Whales and turtle grow much slower than mouse - despite that they can become huge size.
Whales like humans reach puberty much later than mouse; same thing for NMR/naked mole rats (who live 10 times longer than mouse even if both are rodent and small size).

It was demonstrated that NMRs have a protracted/retarded brain development (like humans) and that this 'growing up' lasts years...unlike a mouse. Brain plasticizing rates are different between humans/NMRs vs mouse. Onset to puberty is Late/Later...years later; puberty = maturation = sex reproduction; mouse reproduce rapidly (and reach 'puberty' rapidly) it's how they can make such immense reproduction numbers/offsrping (to counter death of mouse in specie - since they live short lives; thus the 'procreation plan' of mouse is : ''Live Fast - Die Young - Reproduce By Million (to offset deaths/loss)'').

Mouse heart beat = 700-1000 beats/per minute
Human heart beat = 60 beats/per minute
Bowhead whale heart beat = 10-30 beats/per minute
Iceland clam heart beat = 1-5 beats/per minute

Mouse = Extremelt Fast Metabolism/Fast Cellular & Body Growth = Extremely fast death
Iceland Clam = Extremely Slow Metabolism/Slow Cellular & Body Growth = Extremely late death.

Mouse 'specie blueprint' = Fast/Fast Growth/Reproduction Success (quickly).
Whale 'specie blueprint' = Slow/Slow Growth/Late Reproduction (no need to - Individuals Living a Long Life - no need to 'offset death' in the specie with 'fast reproduction' (like mouse); thus Bowhead whales - Push back reproduction/push back 'puberty' (sexual reproduction capability/Maturation) - because animals live longer lifespans and as said, there is Less need to replace them - while mouse - die early; they need to be Replaced Fast - By High Reproduction.

Different 'specie survival strategies' (mouse (reproduction) vs whale (longevity)).

The 2 longest-lived animals (excluding Hexactinellida/corals/jellyfish..),
Iceland Quahog Bivalve Clam (Arctica Islandica) and the Gröenland Shark (Greenland Shark), both live in cold environments - that slow their metabolism drastically, they live underwater (slowed metabolism in water), they live in low O2 environment (Oxygen % is low underwater), they 'bury' themselves in the seabed (clams do that = sea 'torpor/hibernation' = 'dead metabolism - no metabolism - so extremely slow.. as to be (near) dead'); Hypometabolism, Hypotension, Bradycardia (very low or no heart beat), = Reduction of End Products/Junks/Oxidized Molecules 'of Metabolism' = Less Damage Accrual 'per metabolistic second/enegy created (KiloJoule))'.

It was demonstrated that Oxygen - itself - rather than oxidation (from the peroxide/peroxidation process due to exposure to Oxygen, which cause Reactive Oxygen Species (ROS) to be formed, these radical are the source for damage; but they are not the element that alters the epiclock;
Rather - Oxygen/O2 - Itself, is the element. Tehy showed that exposure to oxygen gaz substance advances the clock further; just be exposing yourself to it (ROS or Not).

It is why animals 'buried' in the ground (Naked Mole Rats, live underground in burrows, Low O2 environment = Hypoxia or Anoxia); live longer lifespans; Because they don't expose themselves to Oxygen. One studies had demonstrated High levels of damage in NMRs, yet they live 35 years compared to 3 years for a mouse; that is because they are less exposed to O2 - this alters the epiclock ticking speed.

Bodies that are put into 'hermetic' environment (no O2) degrade much slower, and is not just due to ROS caused by O2 Oxidation/Peroxidation/Free Radical is because - There is Less O2, itself, as gaz substance.

The Iceland clams can live 530 years while these Sharks can live 400+ years...

it was determined by RadioCarbon 14..and by other methods such as 'ring counting - on the shell of the clam'; while; the Horvath or Hannum or GrimAge epigenetic clocks would be even more precise than these methods to determine the methylation/age of the animal. While greenland sharks, their ages were dated by eye aspartic racemization (L -> D amino conversion).

Turtles like Giant Galapgos Tortoise (Harriet) live to 150-175 years, a study had showed that their fibroblast reach up to 150 population doublings; while humans fibroblast are 60-90 population doublings. Thus, simply put, the skin cells/fibroblast of these giant turtles age slower/the clock is slowed and their divisions last longer.

''Someone can answer the question why a whale or a turtle live much longer than a mouse. Why do they have a slower epigenetic clock and metabolism, unlike mice? Until there is a clear answer to this question, it makes no sense to talk about a real therapy for aging.''

They have a slower epigenetic clock because the 'genes' 'activated over time' (through their methyl 'program 'unfolding' and 'making activation over time'') are ones that Contribute to a faster development, faster growth, faster accrual of junk/residues/damage, faster time to sexual 'reproduction'/puberty Maturing/Maturity, -->...faster death.

Mouse Specie Plan = Make Many babies, quick, before dying fast/very soon.
Whale Specie Plan = Push back babies (no one dies rapidly/all live long) and relocate resources for longevity/DNA repair/somatic maintenance. 'Babies/Offspring/reprod can happen late/later'.

Just a 2 cents.

PS: The clock becomes 'auto-influenced' by the 'program 'blooming (puberty/Maturing)' other words, the more the 'program Happens/Unfolds'...the more genes are activated/expressed/changed/...and 'proceed to make the 'unfolding' happen -> Aging/Maturing.
If the program activates genes (say in a mouse) that creates accelerated growth, it will negatively 'self-influence/auto-influence' the epiclock; which will be affected by it; thus it is a Self-Unfolding and Self-Fufilling 'program' a 'prophecy - self-fufilling (...itself)'.

PPS: Thus, really, it means 'the specie's program 'happening''...and following its course/unfolding. Until the animal dies. In mouse the program is accelerated while in humans it is protracted/retarded. Gene Activation vs Gene Silencing; animals that continuously activate genes = fast aging/Acquiry of mutations and new 'changes' = advance aging;
animals that live the longest = gene silencing/repression of 'changes/mutations' = retard aging.

PPPS: If a Groenland whale shark lives 400 years and hits puberty at 150 years (!)...then you understand why they live this long, they push back the 'maturity' 'program' so late...that by teh time they reach it then, more than a century has passed = Ultra-Slowed/Protracted development and growth = Gene silencing/'avoiding to activate genes 'that cause 'maturing/Maturation'.
Maturation = Advancement/'Growth - to Reach Adulthood/sexual maturity'...
cell maturity = older cells the 'grew/matured'...
Maturation = advancement towards Death.
An animal 150 Non-pubert = youth retention/Neoteny/Neotenous; retention of 'juveline' feature for years and years..


Length to Phase:

Mouse (3 years):
Baby -> Child -> Adult -> Senior -> Death

Greenland Shark (400 years):
Baby --------------> Child -------------------------------------------------------------------------------> Adult ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------> Senior -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------> Death.

Posted by: CANanonymity at April 25th, 2021 9:19 PM
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