Friday, 6 of September

Saturday, September 14, 2013 1 comments
It was the last day of the SENS6 conference and we were looking forward to today's lectures.

Josh Mitteldorf gave a short lecture called "How does the body know how old it is?". Josh asked us to stand up and then he named four mechanisms of aging. Each of us had to sit down after that version which he considers as more appropriate. Here they are:
1- antagonistic pleiotropy, 
2- medawar hypothesis, 
3- programmed aging,
4- everything wears out.

I voted for third point, but most of people in auditorium sat after 4th one. After that, Josh was talking about hormesis, conserved genetic bases, two modes of programmed death in protists, breeding and an additive genetic variance for specific mortality. That how we know that aging is programmed. But if it's really programmed, we are to have a special clock for aging. Josh spoke about 4 possible clocks in our body: telomeres, hypothalamus, thymus and methylation.

Anastasia Shindyapina from Lomonosov Moscow State University is one of the youngest speaker on conference. Her short talk about "Bioinformatic analysis of factors involved in age-related mineralization of soft tissues" was very interesting and informative. 
It's well known that age-related mineralization of the soft tissues is a passive process, but it's associate with a lot of disorders such as atherosclerosis and chronic kidney disease. At the same time there are many processes in our organism leading to calcification of structural cells and extracellular matrix. 
Anastasia have demonstrated a bioinformatic network of the molecular pathways underlying calcification in atherosclerotic and chronic kidney disease patients and signaling pathways of collagen. Such analysis allowed young scientists team to propose new potential targets for calcification treatment. 

We often talk about longevity from the point of health and quality of life. But the economy is an equally important part of this issue. If we want to live longer, we need money for research activities and for our future life. Alex Zhavoronkov introduced us to his work called "New economic arguments for accelerating aging research", which was made in collaboration with Maria Litovchenko ( - young scientist from Moscow Institute of Physics and Technology. There were really great and difficult formulas of mortality rate, productivity and labor. For these formulas Alex used a new parameters such as 
rejuvenation rate (RR),
non-rejuvenating rate of biotechnical progress (NRPR),
biomedical science and technology progress rate (BMTPR).

For better understanding we should divide our "old-life" in three parts: retirement age (e.g. 65), healthy productive age (e.g. 75) and age of death (e.g. 85). So rejuvenation rate takes time between retirement age and healthy productive age and non-rejuvenating biomedical progress rate starts at the age of death.
The inference was that economy will grow when RR is greater than NRBPR and/or the retirement age in increasing faster than NRBPR - RR. After that, Alex gave a few recomendations, including accelerated aging research and refocused the research activities towards projects for life-extention.

Copies of Alex's "The Ageless Generation" book about this issue was distributed to all SENS6 delegates.

In conclusion I would like to express my gratitude to Aubrey de Grey and all organizers, sponsors and speakers of SENS6 for the wonderful time we spent there. Hopefully, we will meet again on the next SENS-conference and discuss new outcomes of coping with aging.


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