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Biotech

Longevity Gene Found 358

Posted by samzenpus
from the you're-older-than-you've-ever-been dept.
quixote9 writes "Calorie restriction while maintaining nutrient levels has long been known to dramatically increase life spans. Very different lab animals, from worms to mice, live up to 50% longer (or even more) on the restricted diets. However, so far, nobody has been able to figure out how this works. Scientists at the Salk Institute have found a specific gene in worms (there's a very similar one in people) that is directly involved in the longevity effect. That opens up the interesting possibility that doctors may someday be able to activate that gene directly and we can live long and prosper . . . without giving up chocolate."
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Longevity Gene Found

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  • by ch-chuck (9622) on Thursday May 03, 2007 @06:01AM (#18969823) Homepage
    Give me immortality, or give me death!
    • Two days ago, in a regular newspaper, I read that "A Gene Involved in Aging Has Been Found" and now, two days later on slashdot, I learnt that we have also discovered a longevity gene !
      Science really goes at a fast speed nowadays.
    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by Mister Whirly (964219)
      I would love to be immortal, but only for a while...
  • OTOH (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Virtual_Raider (52165) on Thursday May 03, 2007 @06:04AM (#18969847) Homepage
    I am of two minds on this. I'd like to enjoy a longer lifespan than I would otherwise expect and I would want my loved ones (and everyone in the world for that matter) to have it too. But if according to the wikipedia we are well over SIX THOUSAND MILLION people alive at the moment, the world would find itself in a much worse position if we stopped dieing and clearing the way for younger generations.
    • Re:OTOH (Score:5, Insightful)

      by $RANDOMLUSER (804576) on Thursday May 03, 2007 @06:17AM (#18969915)
      Don't worry about it. Market forces will make it such that only the richest 3% of the population can afford the treatment.
      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by dsanfte (443781)
        As long as there are gene sequencer machines on the market and people like me studying cell biology, don't worry, it'll be done in private residences. Switching on genes isn't so hard.
      • by lixee (863589)
        I concur. Thomas Friedman was quoted as saying: "Capitalism eradicates poverty not mortality".
      • Market forces will make it such that only the richest 3% of the population can afford the treatment.

        And those immortals will go around chopping each others heads off since "there can be only one".

    • Re:OTOH (Score:5, Insightful)

      by pipatron (966506) <pipatron@gmail.com> on Thursday May 03, 2007 @06:26AM (#18969975) Homepage
      Please check http://www.vhemt.org/ [vhemt.org] for a better solution than dying.
    • Re:OTOH (Score:5, Insightful)

      by vidarh (309115) <vidar@hokstad.com> on Thursday May 03, 2007 @06:32AM (#18970007) Homepage Journal
      Birth rates are already well below maintenance levels in most industrialized countries, and even China is set to see it's population peak soon due to the one child policy. The solution to the problem of too high growth is helping developing countries out of poverty.

      We're maybe as little as a century away from actually seeing the worlds population shrinking unless we start increasing lifespans a lot faster than we have.

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by Virtual_Raider (52165)

        Wow, my first "flamebait" :P Totally undeserved if we judge by the responses I got, which by the way were exactly the kind of discussion I wanted to have. Oh well, enough whining. I know that population rates decline on industrialized countries, but they don't hold the bulk of the population anyway. China alone has over a billion people, yes, but India has another and they have no such policy. And neither do many of the developing countries. So unfortunately it just seems like the weight of the population i

      • by Knutsi (959723)
        If "we" help the poor countries out of poverty and into a society like those of the industrialized nations where birth-rates pr. person are negative, would there still be food and raw materials on this planet left to run a society like that?
    • Re:OTOH (Score:5, Insightful)

      by teslar (706653) on Thursday May 03, 2007 @06:50AM (#18970087)

      (...) the world would find itself in a much worse position if we stopped dieing and clearing the way for younger generations.
      Well, that's the thing, we won't stop dying - we'll only stop dying of old age. There's still plenty of accidents and murders to keep the population under control. Also, I'm pretty sure that if you could actually have eternal life, you'll get bored of it eventually and will top yourself given that nature's no longer doing the job for you. And I'll bet that would happen before your 200th birthday.

      I'd like to enjoy a longer lifespan than I would otherwise expect
      I guess not all long lives are the same - having the body of a 20 year old for 100 years instead of, well, one is one thing, having the body of a 150 year old who would normally have died 80 years ago for 100 years is quite another. So be careful what you wish for when you ask for longer lifespans. Make sure you read the fine print first :)
      • by teslar (706653)

        There's still plenty of accidents and murders to keep the population under control.
        And illnesses, sicknesses and the like. Forgot them, sorry - but they are important.
      • Re:OTOH (Score:5, Insightful)

        by khallow (566160) on Thursday May 03, 2007 @07:43AM (#18970403)

        Also, I'm pretty sure that if you could actually have eternal life, you'll get bored of it eventually and will top yourself given that nature's no longer doing the job for you. And I'll bet that would happen before your 200th birthday.

        Either that, or after 200 years, they'll have figured out how to not be bored. Frankly, it's not that hard.
        • I can't remember when or where I read it but I'm pretty sure I read a SF story in which people with incredibly long lifespans would just regularly get their memories blanked so they could re-invent themselves.
      • Tithonus (Score:3, Interesting)

        by dargaud (518470)

        having the body of a 150 year old who would normally have died 80 years ago for 100 years is quite another. So be careful what you wish for when you ask for longer lifespans. Make sure you read the fine print first
        That's the sad myth of Tithonus [wikipedia.org]
      • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

        by pakar (813627)
        Well, i think living longer would be good, if some limitations on offspring would be created, something like that each parent is allowed to have 1 child. = a couple can have 2 children.

        Pros:
        - Less money spent on education since the productive years of each person would be much longer, just think of what the pay would be for a *nix admin with 120 years of experience that still have 80 years left until retirement :)
        - Less money spent on caring for the elderly, since people would probably choose to end their l
    • by Knutsi (959723) on Thursday May 03, 2007 @06:57AM (#18970129)

      It's not the drugs that are the problem, it's our never-ending population growth! The more land we turn into farmland, the more kids we have, that again will need to turn new land into farmland, or squeeze even more out of what is allready there to stay alive, and have more kids that needs more farmland... and so on, so forth...

      Seriously, we know that we will crack the secrets to long life at one point or another. We know that we want to maintain a high standards of living, and achieve self-realiszation. We want there to be wild nature left. We want there to be more species that rats, cockroaches, dogs and cats living alongside us.

      It doesn't take a genious to see that a major pieces in the puzzle that is our long-term survival is population control, and we need to enact it now. Global warming is a small piece in comparison.

      To those who wish to endulge, I'd stornly reccomend Daniel Quinn's excellend books 'Ishmael [amazon.co.uk]', and 'The Story of B'.

      • by drsmithy (35869) <drsmithy.gmail@com> on Thursday May 03, 2007 @07:49AM (#18970431)

        It doesn't take a genious to see that a major pieces in the puzzle that is our long-term survival is population control, and we need to enact it now.

        We've been doing it since the dawn of time. It's called war.

        • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

          War generally has had little effect on population. WWII only killed 3% of the population of the countries involved (and had a subsequent population explosion). Compare to the black death which took out something like 30%.
      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by radtea (464814)
        The more land we turn into farmland, the more kids we have, that again will need to turn new land into farmland, or squeeze even more out of what is allready there to stay alive, and have more kids that needs more farmland... and so on, so forth...

        That would explain why the amount of land farmed in North America has been falling for decades, and the population would be stable or shrinking were it not for immigration, yes?

        The fact is that by the time I am old the "population crisis" will be under-population,
      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by CFTM (513264)
        Population control would be impossible to create and maintain on a global scale; instead all we have to do is allow the natural course of supply and demand to naturally limit the population. The results WILL NOT be ideal and this mindset is somewhat callous but individual homo sapiens are meaningless on the scale of survival. As we are unable to support more people our populations will naturally be checked: diseases will run rampant, there will be massive clean water and food shortages which in turn will
    • by khallow (566160)
      I guess it would be something of an effort to figure out. But is the lives of 6 billion people worth the effort to figure this problem out? Of course.
    • Wait 'till you're 80, pensions have long since been abandoned, and you have to compete for food with twenty year-olds who have chips in their heads, and no sense of what it means to slow down and enjoy life. Longer lifespans aren't such a nice prospect, in a capitalist culture.
    • by smchris (464899)
      I am of two minds on this. I'd like to enjoy a longer lifespan than I would otherwise expect and I would want my loved ones (and everyone in the world for that matter) to have it too.

      Skip the latter thought. That's why there are vampire novels.

      Actually, I'm deadly serious. The reason Frankenstein made it into the diversity of the English literature canon is because it mythologized doubt about the rise of science at the end of the 19th century, right? I suggest it is possible the future canon may teach An
    • I am of two minds on this.

      Well, since the study said it's about earthworms, I'll say that I'm of five pairs of hearts about it.

      Seriously, though, if the average person loved and extra 35 years, the drain on the world's resources would be HUGE. And economically, we'd all have to work much, much longer in order to support our retirements, and the gap between rich and poor would increase. I'm not sure I'd be enthused with working for 90 years before retirement, and I don't know what widening the income gap

  • by rf0 (159958) <rghf@fsck.me.uk> on Thursday May 03, 2007 @06:05AM (#18969849) Homepage
    If we do live longer to say 150 and you retire at say 70 would you really want to spend 80 years doing nothing..
    • by maxwell demon (590494) on Thursday May 03, 2007 @06:08AM (#18969867) Journal
      Why would you do nothing after you retire?
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Scarblac (122480)

      There's no way society would be able to afford that. If we all lived to 150, you'd see the retirement age raised to 100+.

      That said, being retired doesn't mean you do nothing...

    • by MadCow42 (243108) on Thursday May 03, 2007 @06:26AM (#18969977) Homepage
      Well, "retirement age" is just a reflection of what point in your life you become:

      1) able to financially support yourself for the rest of your life without continuing to work, and

      2) possibly no longer valuable in the workforce (i.e. too expensive for the quality/quantity of work you can contribute)

      Living longer would mean you need more money to support yourself in retirement, or that you need to delay retiring. The second point depends on what health state (and mental state) you're in at an older age.

      Personally, I plan to retire as soon as possible - but there's no way I could support myself and wife/etc. for 80+ years on what I've saved to date!

      MadCow.
      • Just stop working on jobs/things you don't like once you become financially secure enough. Better yet, start your own business or if that is too much stress just work what you like. That doesn't even have to be your field - could be charity or whatever.

        Waiting around to die would suck.
      • Living longer would mean you need more money to support yourself in retirement, or that you need to delay retiring. The second point depends on what health state (and mental state) you're in at an older age.

        I'm already planning for retirement such that I will be able to live off the interest alone, and in such a way that I won't be living off all the interest (so that the interest will grow with cost-of-living adjustments). That way, it won't matter how long I live past retirement - the longer I live, th

    • If we do live longer to say 150 and you retire at say 70 would you really want to spend 80 years doing nothing..

      What makes you think your government would allow you to retire at 70 if you lived to 150?
    • by jbarr (2233)

      If we do live longer to say 150 and you retire at say 70 would you really want to spend 80 years doing nothing..
      I'm more worried that things like Social Security, 401(k) redemption, and the like will get bumped up to say, 120 years. Lotsa people investing and paying into systems, the fruits of which they will ultimately never see.
  • by Bob54321 (911744) on Thursday May 03, 2007 @06:10AM (#18969883)
    09 F9 11 02 9D 74 E3 5B D8 41 56 C5 63 56 88 C0

    (That is going to hurt my karma but I am still no bored of that joke...)

    (OK, maybe a little over it)
    • by pipatron (966506)
      You know, it would be even funnier if you had changed a digit or two, or swapped some...
      • by Bob54321 (911744)
        Well, we know there must be two variants of the gene, one for long life and one not. We just need to find some "next-key" HD-DVDs to find the other the variant...
  • by Door in Cart (940474) on Thursday May 03, 2007 @06:19AM (#18969921)
    Our current life expectancy is already putting such a burden on our social security system. When will people realize that quality of life != quantity of life? How is our great-grandkids' generation supposed to support millions of supercentenarians?
    • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

      by yoprst (944706)
      Don't worry! Goverments all around the world are already working on this problem. Lower prison terms, sensible immigration policies, and humane international policies are already there. More to come...
    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by Bogtha (906264)

      How is our great-grandkids' generation supposed to support millions of supercentenarians?

      Won't somebody please think of the great-grandchildren!?

    • by Angstroem (692547)

      Our current life expectancy is already putting such a burden on our social security system. When will people realize that quality of life != quantity of life? How is our great-grandkids' generation supposed to support millions of supercentenarians?

      Well, the point here is not to prolongue the life for the sake of staying merely alive, i.e. losing your mind and control over body functions, but instead staying *young*. What good is it to become 250 years old, when the last 180 years of that you spend in th

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by AGMW (594303)
        ... or just retire and live self-sufficient after I accumulated enough money

        If people end up living to 200 or 250 (obviously, whilst retaining their faculties) why would they necessarily "work-then-retire"?

        Why not work until you have enough put by to have 5/10/15 years doing something you like doing, then work a bit more, then have more time off. This way you wouldn't have to work until you are 100 before you could enjoy yourself! Much better to work until you are, say, 30, then have 5 years off, then w

        • by Angstroem (692547)
          Would be my favorite idea. Work in a field for a couple of years, then learn new/other stuff, then maybe change the entire area of work.

          Another thing is, that with people living longer (not to mention forever) the monetary system would break as everyone would be able to accumulate wealth and become filthy rich over a long enough period of time. Hence, inflation will have to rise in a similar way -- or we just switch over to a new system where unused, deposited money decays instead of accumulates.

          Not to

    • they are also healthy and vibrant

      so your calorie restricted 90 year old is like your uncalorie restricted 60 year old

      in other words, you don't just extend lifespan, you extend the period of robust physical ability to continue working and earning a living

      in a hypothetical society where these longevity genes were activated somehow in a large segment of the population, it wouldn't be crazy to imagine retirement ages of 90 or 100
  • by u-bend (1095729) on Thursday May 03, 2007 @06:32AM (#18970005) Homepage Journal
    How long do we really want these worms to live? Till they become sentient long-lived invertebrate overlords?
    • Well, since the longer they live, the slower they evolve, I wouldn't worry too much.
      • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

        by u-bend (1095729)
        I was just thinking that if we work on their size too, maybe they'll start producing spice and then space exploration will start getting really interesting.
    • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

      by dim5 (844238)
      Relax... they still haven't found treatment for the lay-on-the-sidewalk-until-you-dry-up gene. If they get out of hand, we'll just turn a sprinkler on them.
  • by knapper_tech (813569) on Thursday May 03, 2007 @06:55AM (#18970119)
    If I could get a few more years earlier in life while I still have gobs of energy and relatively no responsibilities... Suddenly four years for a degree wouldn't seem like a huge investment. A year of study abroad in Japan wouldn't be an issue. I might have two hobbies. Long term investments would make more sense. I would take more time to learn more things, aquire more skills, and experience a broader life.

    In short, I think living longer would make it a lot easier to live sensibly. As it is, if I have to weight the risks of investing time or taking something I can do now, I end up taking the most courageous and risky courses possible.

    I don't think it's a relative thing either. Not in the sense that, regardless of whatever time-span I had, I would always wish, "Wow, if only I had twice as much." In an absolute sense, I just don't think I'll ever have the years to do all the things I want to. It makes it seem really pointless to invest eight years into something (for instance, undergrad + med-school) when it's such a large investment that, by the time I get done, I will have lost many opportunities of youth, but I couldn't put such a thing off because, who wants to invest eight years in something that will only pay off for twenty?

    Humanity is robbed. People live crazy lives because we are going to die too soon to live fully, so life is futile. Damn whatever you recognize as the determining factor of our longevity. The light is green to research like this.
    • Humanity is robbed. People live crazy lives because we are going to die too soon to live fully, so life is futile. Damn whatever you recognize as the determining factor of our longevity. The light is green to research like this.

      Yes but the piecemeal approach of medicine won't get there fast enough to work for me. The only real possibility I can see is transhumanism.

  • by aadvancedGIR (959466) on Thursday May 03, 2007 @06:58AM (#18970139)
    Healthy food does not prolonge life, it just make it seem so long and boring you want to die.
    • Ha, ha, but ... (Score:3, Interesting)

      by Bearpaw (13080)
      A few years ago, for various reasons, I started eating much healthier. More whole grains, more fruits and veggies, much less preprocessed food, less fried food, etc, etc. I didn't go vegan or even just vegetarian, but I do eat less meat than I used to. (And I only eat red meat when I have an active craving for it.)

      You know what? Eating healthy takes a little more effort and attention, but it actually tastes a hell of a lot better.

      Just walking into a fast-food place now actually makes me a little nau

  • by lar3ry (10905) on Thursday May 03, 2007 @07:05AM (#18970193)
    Why do I have the feeling that this study was funded by the Ira Howard foundation?
    • Why do I have the feeling that this study was funded by the Ira Howard foundation?

      Offhand I can't think of an example of Lazarus Long passing on his longetivity trait to his decendents. There were his two clone sisters but both were heavily engineered. So IMHO the foundation failed, because few people directly lived long lives as a result of their efforts.

      Note that I am really referring to TEFL, not Methuselas children.

  • "Found", indeed! I've had this gene for a lifetime!
  • by mapkinase (958129) on Thursday May 03, 2007 @07:16AM (#18970259) Homepage Journal
    BBC article has a link [bbc.co.uk] to another BBC article about an example of a man who followed this diet:

    On a typical day, I will eat an oatmeal-based recipe for breakfast, which is about 455 calories and it gives me about half of my daily nutrients.

    I don't eat lunch - after this breakfast I just don't feel hungry - so that leaves me about 1,350 calories for my evening meal, which is a lot.
    This is very close to the dieting of the Muslims when they fast (obligatory fast during Ramadhan or voluntary fast during the month of Sha'ban, on Mondays and Thursdays, on 13,14 and 15th of each Islamic month or other recommended days).

    We have a breakfast (Suhur) before dawn and do not eat or drink until sunset. After sunset we have a usual meal (Iftar). The only difference to the diet described in this BBC article is that we do not drink while Mr. Cavanaugh does.
    • by phayes (202222)
      Not eating/drinking while the sun is up has little to do with a low calorie diet.

      Most of my colleagues who follow ramadan actually gain weight during it as they eat copiously of high calorie food while the sun is down. A big breakfast to tide you through the day & a big, though late, dinner annihilates any gain you might get by not eating during the day.
    • by drsquare (530038)
      That's a bad way of doing things, not eating all day slows your metabolism, during the day your body will break down your muscle mass to feed itself. Then when you eat in the evening it will all be converted to fat.
  • I find it strange (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Mgns (934567)
    that when confronted with the possibility of a greatly increased lifespan, say a hundred years extra, so few actually want it. Ask some people and watch their initial reaction. The ones I've queried have almost invariably argued that it would become boring.
    IMHO this stems from a belief that zest for life is NOT a biological effect, but rather a result of inexperience.

    People grow jaded with age, many even grown comfortable with their own mortality.

    I am inclined to believe that the biological decay of our bod
  • by mapkinase (958129) on Thursday May 03, 2007 @07:38AM (#18970361) Homepage Journal
    Abstract of original article in Nature [nature.com]:

    Reduced food intake as a result of dietary restriction increases the lifespan of a wide variety of metazoans and delays the onset of multiple age-related pathologies. Dietary restriction elicits a genetically programmed response to nutrient availability that cannot be explained by a simple reduction in metabolism or slower growth of the organism. In the nematode worm Caenorhabditis elegans, the transcription factor PHA-4 has an essential role in the embryonic development of the foregut and is orthologous to genes encoding the mammalian family of Foxa transcription factors, Foxa1, Foxa2 and Foxa3. Foxa family members have important roles during development, but also act later in life to regulate glucagon production and glucose homeostasis, particularly in response to fasting. Here we describe a newly discovered, adult-specific function for PHA-4 in the regulation of diet-restriction-mediated longevity in C. elegans. The role of PHA-4 in lifespan determination is specific for dietary restriction, because it is not required for the increased longevity caused by other genetic pathways that regulate ageing.
    The paper has a supplement PDF [nature.com] which unfortunately you won't be able to see unless your institution is subscribed to Nature. The figure S2 in it is an alignment of PHA-4 protein product to 3 most similar proteins in human. Some domains called forkhead are 85% identical, but really good alignment covers only about 90 of 506 residues of PHA-4 protein product. From my experience with proteins that qualify as orthologs, this alignment does not qualify. Homologene [nih.gov] does not have a family of orthologs containing that worm product as well.

    It does not mean that FOXA family does not do something for our longer lives, it just mean that article does not prove that via sequence similarity. Since I enjoy "trolling" I would add that (once again) Nature capitalizes on the subject importance and publishes articles with overstretching conclusions.
  • So, can we expect long lifes like vulcans have?
    Does this gene transforms our ears in pointy ones?
    ...
  • The only way that this could possibly be good is if the action of flipping that switch on (or off) turns off a persons ability to reproduce (retroactively, if need be!)
  • Awesome! (Score:3, Funny)

    by azav (469988) on Thursday May 03, 2007 @07:55AM (#18970473) Homepage Journal
    Now we can have worms that live FOREVER!
  • The article is light on any real scientific information, so for the few people that are interested in what Pha-4 is about, checkout the following link:

    pha-4 Gene Information [wormbase.org]
  • From TFA:

    A study using nematode worms (Caenorhabditis elegans) revealed that a gene called pha-4 played a key role.

    The team found worms that had their pha-4 genes removed showed no enhanced longevity while on the restricted diet.

    But they discovered that the opposite experiment - over-expressing levels of pha-4 in the worms - increased longevity when on the restricted diet.

    <spinal_tap_mode>
    Big Deal. You should see what the pha-11 gene can do! :^)
    </spinal_tap_mode>

  • That opens up the interesting possibility that doctors may someday be able to activate that gene directly and we can live long and prosper . . . without giving up chocolate
    Sweet!
  • Great.... (Score:3, Funny)

    by Wookietim (1092481) on Thursday May 03, 2007 @08:37AM (#18970813) Homepage
    Oh great, now George W. Bush will live forever! The survivors will envy the dead.
  • So if we live 50% slower (because of energy deprivation), we actually live 50% longer. <SARCASM> Whoah, what a great dicovery... </SARCASM> It's exactly the opposite of Achilles' choice: either to be a great and famous hero and die young or to live a long happy life without any lasting fame. We all know how it ended.
  • The population is 6.5 billion and exploding... if everyone lived even just 10% longer, it would seriously exacerbate that problem.

    I'd rather they figure out a way to make the years we have healthier and happier.
    • by soft_guy (534437) *
      Most of the "exploding" population is in the third world and they will not be able to afford this treatment anyway.
      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by SpryGuy (206254)
        True, but imagine the population going from slowly rising in this country to rapidly rising, due to a fall-off in death rates... here in the country where each individual makes a maximum impact on the enviornment, towards energy usage, and towards waste production.

        Of course it'll level off after everyone gets the treatment, but the new established 'level' will be higher than it otherwise would be.

        I still think the emphasis should be on living better, not living longer. Do we really want the retirement age
  • by sbruinsma (1096973) on Thursday May 03, 2007 @09:13AM (#18971187)
    Interesting study, but I'm always a bit leery of aging studies done in these worms (C. elegans), especially those which involve caloric restriction. Worms have the ability to follow an entirely different developmental path under certain conditions. Thus, normally, worms progress to adulthood and live a couple weeks. But if they are STARVED, at a young stage they shift into what is called a "dauer" state--they stop growing and can live for months and months. This is totally different than just living longer or stopping aging at a normal state--they are entering an entirely different developmental stage, which they normally would never see. Humans, of course, have no such developmental path. So with aging studies dealing with caloric restriction in worms, you have to wonder if they're studying something relevant to mammals, or if they are manipulating this worm-specific dauer pathway. It almost seems more likely to me that they would be affecting something to do with this dauer state. It will be interesting to see what happens when they follow up in mice.
  • by walterbyrd (182728) on Thursday May 03, 2007 @09:47AM (#18971619)
    As I understand it, those studies were done on rats. If you let a rat eat all it wants, the rat eat itelf to death in a very short time. That's where they got this calorie restriction idea.

    Thing is, rats that have a normal diet live as long as rats that have calorie restricted diet.

    Or, that's how I understand it.

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