The aging of mitotic cells: regeneration and aging

Published on March 5, 2014   61 min

Other Talks in the Series: Stem Cells

0:00
Today, I will be discussing the aging of mitotic cells. This includes cells which divide throughout life regularly. So in other words, mitotically active cells. And also cells which only divide when subjected to some stimulus, mitotically competent cell. Cells which I will not be discussing today are ones which are post-mitotic. In other words, cells that have differentiated into a form that is constitutively incapable of further division, such as neurons, muscle fibers, for example. Also, today, I shall be discussing a potential to rejuvenate cells that are mitotically competent or mitotically active. In other words, to restore their function and/or their number in the body to a state that resembles what exists in young adults. This can be called regenerative medicine. As you will see, in many cases, it goes beyond the conventional definitions of regenerative medicine.
1:05
We all know that aging is a major problem, whether economically, or in the humanitarian sense, or in any sense we like really. On this slide I am simply showing the change in the demographic situation that has occurred since 1950 and is projected through 2050. Here we are talking about the US population. But, of course, the situation is very similar throughout the industrialized world. And it's getting that way in the rest of the world. The proportion of the population that is over 65 is growing. Now, of course, other things being equal, that is something to celebrate. It is always a good thing to preserve life. But this is also a great problem because, as things stand, we do not have the medical capacity to maintain the health of people as they get progressively beyond that. And my work, and the work of SENS Research Foundation, and indeed the work of an increasing number of biologists around the world, is geared towards changing that, so that people can stay healthy as long as they live. There will actually be, potentially, quite a big side effect of that in terms of how long people live. But we must always remember that the longevity of any individual or the average longevity of the population is a cause for celebration. The longer we can have people live the better, because life is valuable. And, therefore, the goal is to improve the quality of that life. And any quantity of that life that may increase is a bonus.
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The aging of mitotic cells: regeneration and aging

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