Re: Telomeres and stuff

From: Brian Manning Delaney (
Date: Mon May 01 2000 - 12:17:05 MDT wrote:
> In a message dated 5/1/00 7:14:07 AM Pacific Daylight Time,
> writes:

>> And it's been known since the 60's that
>> cells from old animals put in a tissue culture
>> divide less than that of
>> younger ones from the same species,
> Actually there are studies on both sides of that;
> just recently I saw a mention
> of some study that "conclusively proved" old human
> cells do not divide less than cells from young
> adults (so obviously the issue is still open). Fetal
> cells *do* outlast adult cells; but that may be
> a different process.

Hi Curt,

Are you by (very small) chance thinking of Aubrey de Grey's response to my post

de Grey wrote:
> [...] the most recent and most thorough work
> (Cristofalo et al, PNAS 95:10614) suggests
> that telomeres do not shorten at all in the
> cell type most commonly used for cell senescence
> studies in vitro (dermal fibroblasts), [....]

That was news to me (though I'm not up to speed on this research at all).

Of course, all scientists make mistakes (Ames, for ex. :), so I need to look at
the study before being certain.

Have you read it, or, if this isn't the study you saw mentioned: any details
about any other relevant study?

This is an extremely exciting area of research. (It will be fascinating, from a
political/sociological standpoint, to see what happens when, in a very small
number of years [zero, some are now saying...], the means to greatly extended
life span are clearly at our disposal, but the standard medical research
protocol -- clinical trials, etc. -- hasn't yet run its multi-year course, and
people with a lot of extra cash start thinking, "Hey, I can just buy the
necessary lab equipment, hire a couple of underpaid bio-med researchers, and a
doc, and...." It will be legal somewhere in the world quickly, though,
presumably. But who knows.)


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