Navigation Links
Why humans outlive apes
Date:1/26/2010

The same evolutionary genetic advantages that have helped increase human lifespans also make us uniquely susceptible to diseases of aging such as cancer, heart disease and dementia, reveals a study to be published in a special PNAS collection on "Evolution in Health and Medicine" on Tuesday, Jan. 26.

Comparing the life spans of humans with other primates, Caleb Finch, ARCO & William F. Kieschnick Professor in the Neurobiology of Aging in the USC Davis School of Gerontology, explains that slight differences in DNA sequencing in humans have enabled us to better respond to infection and inflammation, the leading cause of mortality in wild chimpanzees and in early human populations with limited access to modern medicine.

Specifically, humans have evolved what Finch calls "a meat-adaptive gene" that has increased the human lifespan by regulating the effects of meat-rich diets. ApoE3 is unique to humans and is a variant of the cholesterol transporting gene, apolipoprotein E, which regulates inflammation and many aspects of aging in the brain and arteries.

"Over time, ingestion of red meat, particularly raw meat infected with parasites in the era before cooking, stimulates chronic inflammation that leads to some of the common diseases of aging," Finch said.

However, another expression of apolipoprotein E in humans -- the minor allele, apoE4 -- can increase the risk of heart disease and Alzheimer's disease by several-fold, Finch explained. ApoE4 carriers have higher totals of blood cholesterol, more oxidized blood lipids and higher rates of early onset coronary heart disease and Alzheimer's disease.

"The chimpanzee apoE functions more like the "good" apoE3, which contributes to low levels of heart disease and Alzheimer's," Finch said. Chimpanzees in captivity have unusually low levels of heart disease and Alzheimer-like changes during aging when compared to humans.

Finch hypothesizes that the expression of ApoE4 in humans could be the result of the "antagonistic pleiotropy theory" of aging, in which genes selected to fight diseases in early life have adverse affects in later life.

"ApoeE may be a prototype for other genes that enabled the huge changes in human lifespan, as well as brain size, despite our very unape-like meat-rich diets," Finch said. "Drugs being developed to alter activities of apoE4 may also enhance lifespan of apoE4 carriers."

In spite of their genetic similarity to humans, chimpanzees and great apes have maximum lifespans that rarely exceed 50 years. Even in high-mortality modern hunter-forager populations, human life expectancy at birth is still twice that of wild chimpanzees.


'/>"/>

Contact: Suzanne Wu
suzanne.wu@usc.edu
213-740-0252
University of Southern California
Source:Eurekalert

Related medicine news :

1. Investigational Agent Targeting Metabotropic Glutamate 2/3 Receptors Demonstrates Antipsychotic Activity in Humans, Study in Nature Medicine Finds
2. Toddler Study Proves Humans Outsmart Apes
3. ABC TV San Francisco Features Canine Cancer Research Story: Saving Our Dogs, Helping Humans Beat Cancer - Work at Morris Animal Foundation, UC-Davis
4. FDA approves knee-injury device for humans
5. Grape Consumption Improves Antioxidant Capacity in Humans
6. Cross-species transplant in rhesus macaques is step toward diabetes cure for humans
7. Not just humans benefit from animal biotechnology
8. Modest gain in visceral fat causes dysfunction of blood vessel lining in lean, healthy humans
9. CDC Reports Prevalence of Worms Transmitted by Dogs and Cats to Humans is Higher Than Previously Understood
10. Chimps Top Humans in Number Recall
11. Menopause May Be Unique to Humans
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:1/20/2017)... ... 2017 , ... “The Angel”: a heartwarming and earnest tale of faith ... his children. “The Angel” is the creation of published author, Marjorie Lund-Fontaine, a former ... impassioned writer. , When asked of her new book, Marjorie says, “‘The Angel’ was ...
(Date:1/20/2017)... ... January 20, 2017 , ... “Journey to Christmas:” a beautiful and enchanting tale that teaches children ... Cordoves, a mother of three in Oklahoma City, and a devoted woman of faith. ... book has been in the back of my mind for years, but actually doing it ...
(Date:1/19/2017)... ... January 19, 2017 , ... ... On-demand E-learning system for Clinical and Regulatory education for Physicians, Physician Advisors, ... Aerolib`s successful education methodology of Disease Specific Documentation Improvement. , The Aerolib ...
(Date:1/19/2017)... ... January 19, 2017 , ... ... innovators, engineers, and scientists from around the world, announces the launch of its ... quick and easy portal to research breakthroughs and trending news, vital information on ...
(Date:1/19/2017)... ... January 19, 2017 , ... Catalent Pharma Solutions, ... biologics and consumer health products, today announced that it will be co-hosting a ... innovative excipients and drug delivery solutions to health industries worldwide. The one day ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:1/19/2017)... Jan. 19, 2017  Abaxis, Inc. (NasdaqGS: ... analysis instruments and consumables for the medical and veterinary ... its financial results for the third quarter fiscal year ... at 4:15 p.m. ET on Thursday, January 26, 2017.  ... quarter fiscal year 2017 after the market closes on ...
(Date:1/19/2017)... Shire plc (LSE: SHP, NASDAQ: ... and Drug Administration (FDA) has acknowledged receipt of the ... for SHP465, a long-acting, triple-bead, mixed amphetamine salts formulation. ... for Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD). The FDA is expected to ... the designated Prescription Drug User Fee Act (PDUFA) action ...
(Date:1/19/2017)... Florida , January 19, 2017 ... Trump administration appears serious about reducing the FDA,s ... and innovation in the medical drug industry, many ... ahead with new clinical trials and development of ... companies forging ahead with recent developments include:  Moleculin ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: