The Evolution of Aging: How New Theories Will Change the Future of Medicine

Theodore C Goldsmith

Published by Azinet Press, 2014
ISBN 10: 0978870956 / ISBN 13: 9780978870959
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Synopsis: Why do we age? Scientists have been baffled by this question for centuries and still disagree regarding even the general nature of aging. They mostly agree that aging is a trait or inheritable organism design characteristic that has been determined by the evolution process. The question is the nature of the evolved design. Followers of modern programmed aging theories contend that aging is the result of what amounts to a biological suicide mechanism that purposely limits human lifetimes to obtain an evolutionary advantage. Followers of modern non-programmed aging theories think that we age because our bodies do not try harder not to age. Each species only evolved the ability to oppose natural deteriorative processes to the extent necessary to achieve the lifespan needed by that species. We age by neglect. Both theories provide an explanation for the enormous range of lifespans observed in biologically similar species such as mammals but until recently programmed aging was seen as theoretically impossible in humans and most mammals because of the way the evolution process was thought to operate. Generations of medical researchers assumed that non-programmed aging was correct. Recently it has become increasingly clear that programmed aging theories are actually more likely to be correct. There now exist multiple evolutionary mechanics theories that support programmed mammal aging. In addition, many recent discoveries provide direct evidence of programmed aging in various organisms. This issue has potentially enormous implications for medicine. The majority of deaths in developed countries are caused by diseases such as heart disease and cancer that are so massively age-related that they are essentially symptoms of aging. The two theories predict that the biological mechanisms ultimately responsible for these age-related diseases are very different. Picking the right aging theory is therefore crucial to research on age-related diseases and could affect the lives of billions of people. This book provides an historical review of biological aging theories including underlying evolution and genetics theories. Medical implications of various theories are also described. Finally the book describes various scientific, social, and even religious issues that have acted to prevent resolution of the programmed/ non-programmed aging controversy. Print length 192 pages (8.5 x 11), 29 illustrations, third edition 4/2013.

From the Back Cover: "Theodore Goldsmith is one of the leading contemporary proponents of the idea that aging is 'programmed'..." Aubrey de Grey, editor in Chief of Rejuvenation Research

What is aging? Scientists have been baffled by this question for centuries and disagree regarding even the general nature of aging. Is aging the result of fundamental limitations that apply to all living things, or are organisms designed by nature and genetically programmed to age because a limited life span conveys some advantage?
 
This issue has potentially enormous implications for medicine. If aging is the result of fundamental and unalterable forces of nature then anti-aging medicine is impossible and anti-aging research is futile and foolish. If aging is imposed by an evolved life span regulation system, then research will likely reveal means for altering the operation of the aging mechanism and thereby improve the treatment of many age-related diseases and conditions.

This book provides an historical review of biological aging theories including underlying evolution and genetics issues and describes exciting recent discoveries and theories showing that aging is indeed programmed.

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Title: The Evolution of Aging: How New Theories ...
Publisher: Azinet Press
Publication Date: 2014
Binding: Paperback
Book Condition: Good
Edition: 3.

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