Re: [GRG] Longevity lessons from Brandt’s bat, the little brown bat, and the naked mole-rat



Thanks for your comments.  As long as you have enterred the discussion, I wonder if you would be kind enough to comment on the broader question of whether we can learn from nature in better addressing human aging and, if so, how.  Although you believe human aging is immensely complicated (which I think few of us would disagree with), you were also involved in an approach to human aging intervention based on using complex interventions to treat this complex problem, namely, nutritional interventions, in which multiple dietary factors might produce broad effects on many small aspects of aging and overall produce a significant benefit.  This was advanced both through Genescient, which proposed specific data-based nutritional interventions, and with a broader concept of “practical immortality,” in which aging might be made to stop at more advanced ages by matching our diet better to the diet our species was selected to consume.  Would you kindly update us on these approaches and give us your opinions about the relevance of selecting specific long-lived species to study as examples of what we might better do to extend human life- and healthspan?


Thanks —



On Monday, February 2, 2015 3:32 PM, Michael Rose wrote:

Dear Colleagues,Since I am beging called out by name, I should state my actual views.I do not think that aging is selected for by group or ecosystem-wideselection of the type proposed by Josh Mitteldorf.  Extremely fewpeople who do actually study group selection in the lab would agreewith his views on this point.  I DO think that group selection can actpowerfully under specific circumstances.  But not usually on aging.I do not think that longevity per se is selected
for, in the sensethat the term is used in gerontological research.  But increased ratesof earlier adult survival can be selected for, and undoubtedly havebeen among some cetaceans, some psittacaforms, and some homininspecies, like ourselves.Non-fissile species that live a long time under laboratory conditionstend to have high and sometimes even increasing rates of adultsurvival in nature, which is expected to sustain higher levels ofHamilton’s forces of natural selection than those of species which donot have such high rates of adult survival.  Sometimes, as in the caseof trees, species that a live a long time  also have progressivelyincreasing fertilities in nature, which also helps maintain highforces of natural
selection at later ages. Species  that have thickshells, excellent flight,or  large body mass are all expected to livelonger on average based on Hamiltonian reasoning so long as thebenefits of such adaptations for net fertility (kx) increase with ageover some range of adult ages, as would arise with progressive shellthickening, improving flight technique, and progressively increasingbody mass.However, discussing patterns of life-history evolution using words onemail lists is a bit like discussing economic theory using politicalcartoons.  It might feel good, but it will rarely contribute tointellectual progress.  That’s why explicit mathematical theory,numerical simulations, and well-controlled experimental evolutionprojects are the best ways to address issues like these.On the other hand, lending each other emotional support through venueslike the GRG is a good way to keep spirits up and motivate all of usto work harder on the problem of controlling human aging. If there hadbeen email groups in Pasteur’s time, I think they might have helpedencourage those who were dedicated to combatting infectious disease.Best wishes,Michael Rose
On 2/2/15, Gregory M Fahy wrote:> Johnny,>> I believe Michael Rose would argue that longevity IS selected for, and in> the case of the naked mole rat, which I believe does not show reduced> fertility with age, the longer they live, the more offspring they have, and> so longevity should be selected for.  In a sense, the NMR is like the> bowhead whale and the Mcaw in that all have virtually unlimited habitats:> the whale will never fill up the entire ocean, the NMR will never use up all> the available dirt, and the Mccaw will never fill up the entire sky, so> there is perhaps no imminent danger of destroying their own niches as a> result of becoming very long lived and, as a result, overpopulating> themselves to death.>> Most other species, though, do have finite niche sizes, and so Josh> Mittledorf would argue that senescence has
been selected for to prevent> niche destruction by overpopulation.  Which raises the question of whether> humans may owe their great longevity compared to their nearest relatives at> least in part to the fact that they can migrate and occupy every conceivable> environment, thus making their niche virtually unbounded as well — well,> for the first million years or so, anyway.  How this evolves is another> question, but at least it’s food for thought.>> Most examples of big longevity gains seem to be the result of disrupting> default pro-aging processes, and the logic of limiting population sizes> might explain the existence of at least some active pro-aging processes> whose abrogation may be the easiest way forward to human
applications.  For> more discussion, see The Future of Aging.>> — Greg>>> On Saturday, January 31, 2015 6:53 AM, “John M. “Johnny” Adams, GRG Exec> Director” wrote:>>>> Dear GRG Member,>> A major point of the Brandt’s bat message is that their longevity is an> “unintended” consequence of natural selection.  Nature didn’t select> specifically for longevity.>> Later Jim shared with me some ideas not covered in his message.  One is that> because the animals live in environments
with stable temperatures that are> low, they have lost the ability to regulate temperature.  They have a lower> body temperature which is associated with living longer.  There is a> connection with mitochondrial uncoupling protein and next I’ll research how> that works and how we can use it for an aging solution.>> They have lower metabolism so lower free radical production.  Still the free> radical rate is high, so that would be an argument against the free radical> theory of aging.>> The animals live in environments with virtually no predators or need to> respond to pain in order to survive, therefore have lost much of their pain> sensitivity.  Their lives are less stressful so less sympathetic
nervous> activity.  A byproduct is lower levels of autonomic stress and longer life.> There is a connection with transient receptor potential channels (TRPV) and> next I’ll research how that works and how we can use it for an aging> solution as well.>> This reminds me of fish that live in darkness in caves that have lost> vision.  I believe resources have been diverted from vision systems to other> systems that better assure survival in their niche.>> Johnny>> John M. “Johnny” Adams> Executive Director Gerontology Research Group>> (650) 265-4969> (949) 922-9786 cell> ~~~~> CEO / Exec. Director> Carl I. Bourhenne Medical Research Foundation / Aging Intervention> Foundation>>>>


About Johnny Adams

My full-time commitment is to slow and ultimately reverse age related functional decline to increase healthy years of life. I’ve been active in this area since the 1970s, steadily building skills and accomplishments. I have a good basic understanding of the science of aging, and have many skills that complement those of scientists so they can focus on science to advance our shared mission. Broad experience Top skills: administration, management, information technology (data and programming), communications, writing, marketing, market research and analysis, public speaking, forging ethical win-win outcomes among stakeholders (i.e. high level "selling"). Knowledge in grant writing, fundraising, finance. Like most skilled professionals, I’m best described as a guy who defines an end point, then figures out how to get there. I enjoy the conception, design, execution and successful completion of a grand plan. Executive Director Gerontology Research Group (GRG). Manages Email discussion forum, web site, meetings and oversees supercentenarian (oldest humans, 110+ years) research. CEO / Executive Director Carl I. Bourhenne Medical Research Foundation (Aging Intervention Foundation), an IRS approved 501(c)(3) nonprofit. Early contributor to Supercentenarian Research Foundation. Co-Founder Geroscience Healthspan Forum. Active contributor to numerous initiatives to increase healthy years of life. Co-authored book on conventional, practical methods available today to slow the processes of aging – nutrition, exercise, behavior modification and motivation, stress reduction, proper supplementation, damage caused by improper programs, risk reduction and others. Fundamental understanding of, and experience in the genomics of longevity (internship analyzing and curating longevity gene papers). Biological and technical includes information technology, software development and computer programming, bioinformatics and protein informatics, online education, training programs, regulatory, clinical trials software, medical devices (CAT scanners and related), hospital electrical equipment testing program. Interpersonal skills – good communication, honest, well liked, works well in teams or alone. Real world experience collaborating in interdisciplinary teams in fast paced organizations. Uses technology to advance our shared mission. Education: MBA 1985 University of Southern California -- Deans List, Albert Quon Community Service Award (for volunteering with the American Longevity Association and helping an elderly lady every other week), George S. May Scholarship, CA State Fellowship. BA psychology, psychobiology emphasis 1983 California State University Fullerton Physiological courses as well as core courses (developmental, abnormal etc). UCLA Psychobiology 1978, one brief but fast moving and fulfilling quarter. Main interest was the electrochemical basis of consciousness. Also seminars at the NeuroPsychiatric Institute. Other: Ongoing conferences, meetings and continuing education. Aging, computer software and information technology. Some molecular biology, biotech, bio and protein informatics, computer aided drug design, clinical medical devices, electronics, HIPAA, fundraising through the Assoc. of Fundraising Professionals. Previous careers include: Marketing Increasing skill set and successes in virtually all phases, with valuable experience in locating people and companies with the greatest need and interest in a product or service, and sitting across the table with decision makers and working out agreements favorable to all. Information Technology: Management, data analysis and programming in commercial and clinical trials systems, and bioinformatics and protein informatics. As IT Director at Newport Beach, CA based technology organization Success Family of Continuing Education Companies, provided online software solutions for insurance and financial professionals in small to Fortune 500 size companies. We were successful with lean team organization (the slower moving competition was unable to create similar software systems). Medical devices: At Omnimedical in Paramount CA developed and managed quality assurance dept. and training depts. for engineers, physicians and technicians. Designed hospital equipment testing program for hospital services division. In my early 20’s I was a musician, and studied psychology and music. Interned with the intention of becoming a music therapist. These experiences helped develop valuable skills used today to advance our shared mission of creating aging solutions.
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