From time to time I will be listing a few notices that I think might be of particular interest to my readers, starting here. I also review a new book I think to be of special importance.
1. PHONE CALL-IN SESSIONS – TALK LONGEVITY WITH VINCE
I will be experimenting with weekly call-in group conversations, Tuesday evenings 7:00 – 8:00 pm EDT. First regular Tuesday session will be, October 8. However since people may be celebrating Yom Kippur then, I am also scheduling a call in, same time, on Monday Oct 7. The agenda of the conversations will be up to you. Any topic of health or longevity is fair game. And all who will have joined the phone conversation will be free to join in. Be aware though that I plan to record the conversations and might want to use parts of them on this or other blogs. I plan to keep the conference line open for conversations during the 7-8 pm time frames no matter how many call in, even if it is just to chat with a single caller. I have so far scheduled these through Nov 11th but will keep them going after that if there is sufficient interest.
Vince Giuliano is inviting you to a scheduled Zoom meeting.
Join Zoom Meeting
Tuesday Meeting ID: 500 754 984 Tues mtgs Password: 004871
Mon Oct 7 Meeting ID 409-297-457 Mon Oct 7 mtg password: 725408
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+16468769923,,500754984# US (New York)
+14086380968,,500754984# US (San Jose)
Dial by your location
+1 646 876 9923 US (New York)
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+1 669 900 6833 US (San Jose)
Tuesdays Meeting ID: 500 754 984 Mon Oct s Meeting ID: 409-297-457
Find your local number: https://us04web.zoom.us/u/fisIuyStX
(If you have a problem calling from the country you are in, please let me know and I will see if I can add that country to the list for incoming calls — Vince)
2. BOOK REVIEW
I am still listening to the final chapter of the audiobook version of David Sinclair’s new book Lifespan: Why We Age – and Why We Don’t Have To. The excitement engendered by this reading combined with that of my current research continues to resonate in me, taking over my thoughts not only by day but in bed trying to go to sleep, and sometimes in dreams. There have been a few nights when I wake up at 3 AM to rush in the cold to my nearest computer to make notes of new insights – or at least what I hope will continue to be seen the next day as new insights. I am 98.5% aligned with David with respect to the sciences of longevity and his views and implications. I think this book might – just might – turn out to be a landmark writing of Western History, a full Manifesto right up in importance with Charles Darwin’s On the Origin of Species, Karl Marx’s Das Kapital, and Thomas Jefferson’s Declaration of Independence.
The book is a Manifesto because it comes out and clearly argues for certain central tenants that we in the aging community may believe privately, but are so radical that we dare share them only with a few colleagues in our aging sciences community, or with close friends, or with family members. And when we do share them, we are prepared for a reaction of “Please pass the potatoes.” Or “Maybe he is a little nuts, but I will ignore this because he is a good guy with his heart in the right place.” Here are some of David’s Manifesto declarations, in my phrasings of them:
- Aging is not inevitable, nor is it noble nor is it something we should be complacent about. It is a scourge that ultimately causes most diseases that lead to untold pain, suffering, and deaths
- We are putting our medical research dollars in the wrong places, such as in trying to cure diseases like cancers which are basically downsteam consequences of aging. It would be much cheaper and we would be better off putting the dollars into aging research where we could quickly learn how to stop or reverse aging and avert the diseases happening in the first place. (A bit self-serving for a person who makes his living doing aging research, but I think is absolutely correct. NIH allocates only a tiny sliver of its medical research budget to aging,)
- It is time we start treating aging as what it is, a terrible disease that leads to death for everyone instead of an inevitable condition that just is and goes along with being human.
- It is probably easier to cure aging than, say, cancers.
These are views of a Professor in the Harvard Medical School and head of a key program of aging research there, and a prize-winning pioneer who led research on several key molecular biology aspects of aging, such as the key roles of sirtuins, a person who merits careful listening to. That is why the book could end up being an important Manifesto related to the human condition.
Beyond these manifesto points, there are many other points I profoundly agree with like
- We are quickly moving to having more and better interventions to forestall important aspects of aging or reverse them.
- Perhaps the central new anti-aging technology will be cell and organ renewal involving some of the Yamanaka factors (The topic of one of the podcasts mentioned below).
I don’t want to over-emphasize the relatively minor quibbles I have with a few of David’s points:
- I disagree with David’s statement that there is no scientific reason for aging. I think that reason is the Second Law of Thermodynamics, that entropy (the degree of disorganization) in any (closed) system can in time only increase. David differentiates between digitally-encoded information in our genes, and analog information encoded in our epigenome. The digital genetic information is passed on reliably mostly error-free from generation to generation via sexual reproduction in humans and is identical in all cells of an individual. While much (but not all) of the analog epigenetic information is acquired in the developmental, and experience processes of individual cells and varies by cell and organ type. A way I put it is that the species-related information is encoded digitally to preserve the species, but the information related to individual members of a species and to their organs is encoded in analog form, where it is subject to entropy degradation. This is another example of the old observation that evolution cares about species, not so much about members of a species. So the fight against entropy (the principle that in a system everything tends with time to become more disorganized) is mainly on an individual level, not on a species level. Entropy is a very fundamental law of nature. Increasing entropy is why you will never see smoke gathering itself together in the sky and going down a smokestack, or the pieces of a fallen shattered teacup putting themselves together again, the little puddles of tea on the floor gathering themselves together and going back into the teacup, and the intact and full teacup jumping back on the table. Increasing entropy is why time runs in only one direction and why we age.
- I think it is unclear that we can indefinitely fight entropy in our bodies to extend our healthy years of being alive. Of course, we might go on for a long time since our bodies are not closed systems and we can mobilize energy for the purpose, – so our bodies need not, in fact, be absolutely subject to the Second Law of Thermodynamics. I am betting on anti-aging – up to some still-unknown point.
- David compares aging to dirt on a DVD, which can be wiped away to restore the original digital data. I have a large collection of DVDs, and some of them have acquired not only dirt, but deep scratches causing irretrievable loss of digital data. Favorite parts of some of my favorite movies on DVDs are now gone because of these scratches. I am concerned that aging may also seriously damage our digital non-germline information, putting absolute age reversal in question.
- David’s definition of aging is, Aging is loss of “analog” information such as is information encoded in the epigenome. I see the situation in slightly different terms. The definition I suggest is “Aging is effective loss of access to information due to age-related increases in systems entropy (e.g. worsening signal-to-noise ratio). The issue with David may be simply due to his over-simplification in a publication for a general audience since most people don’t know what entropy is.
There are a lot of supporting discussions in this book, and the narrated version carries me along nicely. The audio version is supported by PDF data files which you can purchase separately. Read this book.
3. PODCASTS OF MINE
Besides reading my blogs, you can listen to me. I have done a number of podcasts. Among the most recent ones are:
a. Podcast interview November 2018 with Tara Smith, on New Paradigm for Cellular and Tissue Regeneration
“Vince Giuliano from Aging-Sciences.com explains the new paradigm of how cells can revert to their previous cell state through epigenetics and inflammation for tissue regeneration. We also discuss the potential downside of senolytics and how senescent cells can indirectly help promote cellular regeneration, as well as his opinion on human connection and strong relationships.” I highly recommend this one as it heralds what I believe will be a central thrust in aging research in the coming 20 years.
b. A podcast interview recorded June 18, 2018, on Anti-aging and Reversing Degenerative Diseases, on Youtube sponsored by Self-Hacked. Posted on the Self-Hacked blog. The interviewer is Joe Cohen. the interview was over a year ago, but I just came across it.
The discussion runs over a variety of topics, ranging between the personal and scientific and sharing what I consider to be wisdom as well as information. I consider myself to be a self-hacker, this part of me being integrated with the health and longevity scientist part. And this is reflected in the conversation where I relate relevant personal anecdotes as well as make a few science-based assertions. I discuss selected epigenetic effects. I describe some of my main personal longevity interventions, talk about sleep, exercise, management of stress, inflammation, and my personal freedom from age-related diseases. I respond to questions about a few “anti-oxidants” and other selected dietary substances. I do not discuss the leading-edge topics that interest me today. I describe the early history of arthritis that led me to the self-hacking that led to the early development of the 4 Herb Synergy supplement. I touch on the benefits of fish and fish oils.
c. Podcast Interview on Healthy Longevity with Susan Downs February 2018 on
Deals with a multiplicity of topics, including changing lifespans and why this has been happening, the nature of aging, aging programs, multidimensional nature of health and health preservation, epigenetics and aging clocks, caloric restriction, certain key dietary supplements, and multiple suggestions for maintaining health and extending our personal lifespans.
4. AGING MATTERS BLOG BY JOSH MITTLEDORF
If you follow this blog and don’t know about Josh’s Blog Aging Matters, you might want to check it out. It contains many facts and a number of interesting views, though I do not necessarily agree with all of them. The most-recent postings in this blog are:
- Scaling the Alzheimer’s Cure
- 1st Age Reversal Results—Is it HGH or Something Else?
- Rejuvenation at the Cell Level
- Money in Aging Research, Part II
- Money in Aging Research, Part I
Vince I am having trouble understanding the connection of hunger , per se, and the reference Dr. Sinclair used on page 105 at the top of the page. I downloaded the paper he cited and have printed it out and am studying it. Dr. Sinclair also quotes from the summary in this paper in the book notes ,” Investigating how the hypothalamus potentially controls aspects of aging the authors found that ‘immune inhibition or GnRH restoration in the hypothalamus/brain’ offers two possible possible directions for extending lifespan and fighting health issues that come with aging. ”
Earlier in the summary the authors , for context, say ” Several interventional models were developed showing that aging retardation and lifespan extension are achieved in mice through preventing against aging-related hypothalamic or brain IKKβ/NF-κB activation. Mechanistic studies further revealed that IKKβ/NF-κB inhibits GnRH to mediate aging-related hypothalamic GnRH decline, and GnRH treatment amends aging-impaired neurogenesis and decelerates aging. In conclusion, the hypothalamus has a programmatic role in aging development via immune-neuroendocrine integration”
What Dr. Sinclair says on page 105 is ” Being hungry is necessary for CR to work because hunger helps turn on genes in the brain that release longevity hormones, at least according to the recent study by Dongsheng Cai at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine. 38″
So Vince or anybody else who understands this better, where is the evidence that hunger itself is essential to turn on these specific longevity genes? Knowing that it is essential to adapt to hunger, in general, would be helpful. I am sure we can all do it as we did it for millions of years.
The full study by Dongsheng Cai is available at this link:
“Hypothalamic Programming of Systemic Aging Involving IKKβ/NF-κB and GnRH”