Long Life 9
Long Life: the Cryonics Institute newsletter
September/October 2003 -- Volume 2, Number 9
Welcome to Long Life -- the electronic newsletter of the Cryonics Institute. We're here to update you with brief cutting-edge news, updates, links, and information about the latest scientific, medical, health, anti-ageing, and social developments relevant to CI's goal of saving, preserving, and extending human life. Long Life may also include news about Cryonics Institute events and member activities and opinion. We welcome your feedback, and encourage readers to forward issues to friends and interested parties.CI and general cryonics newsSee Immortalist highlights sent as a separate emailGeneral News Items
Important Note: A lot of these items are from sources designed for public consumption and contain no references or further information. It is up to readers to do their own web searches or whatever for further information.Many of the stories here came from InfoBeat, an internet based news service. Unfortunately they have reduced their coverage of scientific issues, at least for the moment.Undated or earlier items:Alzheimer's surge predicted
The number of people with dementia is set to rise.
An "epidemic of Alzheimer's" over the next few decades could be far worse than previously thought, experts suggest. The number of people with Alzheimer's could treble by 2050, say US researchers, as the population surges and existing patients live longer.
more on http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/health/3161523.stmPainkillers protect against Parkinson's
The drugs may have a protective effect. Anti-inflammatory drugs may be able to reduce the risk of someone developing Parkinson's disease later in life. However, while the study may provide clues to future therapies, doctors are not recommending people taking drugs such as ibuprofen long-term.
Exploding the food myths
Is a cooked breakfast always unhealthy?
Do we really know what is good for us?
Is 'low fat' always a good thing?And is a cooked breakfast always unhealthy?There is so much food confusion around that the UK's Food Standard Agency (FSA) has decided to debunk the myths and test the consumers.
more on http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/health/3030271.stmNASA Ames Research Center, Moffett Field, Calif. August 11, 2003
RESEARCHERS FIND ANTARCTIC LAKE WATER WILL FIZZ LIKE A SODA
Water released from Lake Vostok, deep beneath the south polar ice sheet, could gush like a popped can of soda if not contained, opening the lake to possible contamination and posing a potential health
hazard to NASA and university researchers.An important implication of this finding is that scientists expect oxygen levels in the lake water to be 50 times higher than the oxygen levels in ordinary freshwater lakes on Earth. Organisms there will have developed methods to deal with this oxidative stress. [ not from NASA: Maybe some of these can be applied to life extension stragegies in humans at ordinary levels of oxygen, leading to longer lifespan. ]
A team of scientists that recently investigated the levels of dissolved gases in the remote Antarctic lake found the concentrations of gas in the lake water were much higher than expected, measuring 2.65 quarts (2.5 liters) of nitrogen and oxygen per 2.2 pounds (1 kilogram) of water. According to scientists, this high ratio of gases trapped under the ice will cause a gas-driven "fizz" when the water is released.
"Our research suggests that U.S. and Russian teams studying the lake should be careful when drilling because high gas concentrations could make the water unstable and potentially dangerous," said Dr. Chris McKay of NASA's Ames Research Center in California's Silicon Valley. McKay is lead author of a paper on the topic published in the July issue of the Geophysical Research Letters journal.
"We need to consider the implications of the supercharged water very carefully before we enter this lake," said Dr. Peter Doran, a co-author and associate professor of Earth and Environmental Sciences at the University of Illinois at Chicago.
Lake Vostok is a rich research site for astrobiologists, because it is thought to contain microorganisms living under its thick ice cover, an environment that may be analogous to Jupiter's moon, Europa. Europa contains vast oceans trapped under a thick layer of ice. Russian teams are planning to drill into Lake Vostok's 2.48 mile (four kilometer) ice cover in the near future, and an international plan calls for sample return in less than a decade.
More on http://salegos-scar.montana.edu/Most Heart Attacks Caused By An Unhealthy LifestyleWednesday, August 20 2003Two sweeping studies released today appear to explode the long-held myth that half of heart attacks result from bad genes or bad luck.The studies, focusing on different populations totaling about half a million people, indicate that about 90% of people with severe heart disease have one or more of four classic risk factors: smoking, diabetes, high cholesterol and high blood pressure.That means the vast majority of the 650,000 new heart attacks each year could be prevented or delayed for decades by quitting smoking, reducing cholesterol and controlling hypertension and diabetes.''If we could eliminate smoking and get people to be fit and trim, we could turn this thing around without unraveling the genes that cause heart disease,'' says researcher Eric Topol of the Cleveland Clinic Foundation. He is co-author of a study involving more than 120,000 heart patients.The research has major policy implications. It suggests that doctors and patients should place even greater emphasis on prevention. The American Heart Association and National Cholesterol Education Program both have emphasized aggressively treating people who have not yet had a heart attack if their ''global risk'' is high.''I think these studies will wake people up and renew the emphasis on traditional risk factors,'' says Philip Greenland of Northwestern University. He is lead author of a study involving almost 400,000 people enrolled in lifestyle studies and followed for up to 30 years.The researchers analyzed data from previous major studies. The reports appear in today's Journal of the American Medical Association.''These papers are just amazing. They're basically blowing away the myth that only half of the people who have heart disease have traditional risk factors,'' says John Canto of the University of Alabama-Birmingham. He co-wrote an accompanying editorial in the journal.None of the researchers could identify the source of the erroneous assertion, cited by experts for years. ''It's folklore,'' Greenland says.A separate analysis in the journal concludes that there isn't enough evidence to conclude that so-called new risk factors for heart disease, including inflammatory proteins called Lipoprotein-A, C-reactive protein and homocysteine, add much to the predictive value of the four classic risks.To see more of USAToday.com, or to subscribe, go to http://www.usatoday.comNanoparticles to pinpoint viruses in body scans
19:00 20 August 03
An injection of magnetic nanoparticles into your bloodstream could reveal precisely where harmful viruses are lurking.The particles are coated with antibodies to a particular virus, so they will form clumps that should be visible on conventional body scans if that virus is present. The team working on the technology, from the Harvard Medical School's Center for Molecular Imaging Research in Charlestown, Massachusetts, have already managed to detect viruses in body fluids and tissue samples.They hope to be able to detect viruses in patients' bodies within a couple of years. Much of the technology has already been tested in humans, so the scientists are confident that it will be safe.New evidence links virus with breast cancer
17:58 18 August 03
NewScientist.com news service
New evidence for a link between a virus and human breast cancer has been revealed in a series of studies by Australian researchers. The virus, dubbed HHMMTV, is very similar to a version known to trigger mammary cancer in mice.The researchers stress that they have not proven that the human form causes cancer in people - but if it does, its raises the possibility of developing a vaccine against the deadly disease.A team at the Prince of Wales Hospital in Sydney published research in March that found the virus in 19 of 45 breast cancer biopsies taken from caucasian Australian women (Clinical Cancer Research, vol 9 , p 1118). In contrast, they identified HHMMTV in less than two per cent of normal breast tissue samples.but nothing about how the virus may spread.Male HRT may raise heart disease risk
10:48 21 August 03
The idea of giving ageing men hormone replacement therapy has suffered another body blow with the discovery that high doses of testosterone increase sleep disturbances that raise the risk of heart disease."This shows there are risks other than financial ones," says team leader David Handelsman of the ANZAC Research Institute in Sydney.In the US, where drugs are directly marketed to patients, the amount of testosterone prescribed has tripled over the past decade. And while few men in Europe or Australasia currently take testosterone, some private clinics aggressively promote it as a cure-all for male ageing.Enzymes Found to Delay Aging Process
Discovery Could Lead to Drugs to Extend Life SpanBy Rick Weiss
Washington Post Staff Writer
Monday, August 25, 2003; Page A02
Scientists have found for the first time a way to rev up a potent "anti-aging" enzyme in living cells, an advance they said could speed the development of drugs to extend human life span and prevent a wide range of geriatric diseases.The novel approach has significantly increased the life spans of yeast and human cells in laboratory dishes and extended the lives of flies and worms -- organisms that, on the level of molecular biology, age much as humans do. Indeed, the researchers said, the compounds seem to have the same anti-aging effect as a drastic reduction in calories, the only strategy ever proven to extend life in mammals but one that most people find difficult to stick to.It is too soon to say whether the latest findings will ever make the leap from the lab bench to the geriatrics clinic -- though some may choose not to wait: Of all the compounds the researchers tested, the one that boosted the anti-aging enzyme the most was resveratrol, an ingredient in red wine that has been credited with that beverage's ability to lower the risk of heart disease.Scientist In Anthrax Probe Sues Ashcroft, FBI
Wednesday, August 27
WASHINGTON --A former researcher at an Army lab accused Attorney General John Ashcroft and the FBI Tuesday of improperly casting suspicion on him in the 2001 anthrax attacks to fool the public into believing progress was being made in the investigation.In a lawsuit filed in U.S. District Court here, Steven Hatfill, 48, says top Justice and FBI officials violated his constitutional rights ''to promote their own personal and political interests'' when the investigation stalled last summer.Specifically, the lawsuit says the FBI and Justice Department have violated Hatfill's privacy and his Fifth Amendment right to life, liberty and property by interfering with his employment prospects.''This lawsuit is not just about Steven Hatfill,'' said attorney Thomas Connolly, who is representing Hatfill for free. ''It is about the enormous power government officials have. . . . Whatever the government can legally do to Steven Hatfill, it can legally do to any of us.''Nanotube television set projectSeptember 30, 2003The purpose of the agreement and subsequent effort to develop a 25-inch diagonal, full-color, carbon nanotube (CNT) television prototype is to demonstrate that carbon nanotube televisions in field emission mode have progressed enough to enable high volume manufacturing. The resolution of the display will be compatible with a 60-inch or larger HDTV format display that is the target product.
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Sincerely, John de Rivaz: http://John.deRivaz.com for websites including Cryonics Europe, Longevity Report, The Venturists, Porthtowan, Alec Harley Reeves - inventor, Arthur Bowker - potter, de Rivaz genealogy, Nomad .. and more