Is there a connection between Telomeres, Free Radicals, and the Aging Process?

ufotruth at ix.netcom.com ufotruth at ix.netcom.com
Sun Jul 26 00:48:28 EST 1998


I am wondering if there is a connection between telomeres and free
radicals. We know for a fact that by keeping telomeres enlongated that
cells can be made immortal or at least reproduce many more times than
the Hayflick Limit. But I have also read that free radicals also have
an affect on aging. I have even read that certain worms that had been
genetically engineered to produce fewer free radicals lived many times
longer than their normal life span.

So, it seems like both free radical production and telomeres have are
involved in the aging process. Does anyone here have any idea about
how there could be a connection between the two?

Here are a few questioins that I am wondering about:

1) If limiting the number of free radicals (either through genetic
engineering or with anti-oxidants) has allowed certain creatures to
live longer and their cells to replicate more times than normal does
this mean that the reduction of free radicals has somehow prevented
their telomeres from shortening?

2) Is it possible that free radicals in a cell could either inhibit
the telomerase enzyme in cells or actually shorten the telomeres of

3) Could it be that in creatures with fewer free radicals that cells
do not get damaged as often, so cells do not need to reproduce as many
times during a certain period of time, so that the telomeres of the
chromosomes are simply not used up as fast?

4) Have there been any tests or experiments done to see whether the
telomeres of cells treated with anti-oxidants, which would have fewer
free radicals, shorten faster or slower than cells with a higher
ammount of free radicals?


Well, if anyone could answer the above questions or make any comments
I would greatly appreciate it! I am not very educated in biology (I am
just an 18 year old high school graduate) but I am very interest in
the possibility of reversing the aging process!

Best Regards,

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