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CNN21 Ways to Live a Longer, Fuller Life
When we’re young, we all believe we’re going to live forever. But as we age, most of us realize that’s not the case. What’s more, it becomes clear that the choices we make can have an impact on how long we live. While there are no guarantees or methods that can tell you how many calendars you’ll buy (despite what actuaries say), there are many simple benchmarks that can help predict if you’ll live longer than most. Here are 21 of the most important reasons why you’ll probably live longer than your peers—try not to rub it in.
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UCSFLongevity Hormone is Lower in Stressed and Depressed Women
Women under chronic stress have significantly lower levels of klotho, a hormone that regulates aging and enhances cognition, researchers at UC San Francisco have found in a study comparing mothers of children on the autism spectrum to low-stress controls.
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TIMEThe Cure for Aging
If there were Guinness World Records dedicated to high-achieving rodents, Mouse UT2598 would deserve a mention. The average life span for a mouse is 2.3 years–so at age 3 and still going strong, Mouse UT2598 has a shot at beating the record for longest-lived, which stands at about 4. Translating that to a human life span, he’s hovering around the centennial mark, but on the outside, he looks no different from his much younger brethren.
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LA TimesA Fateful Gene May Make Us Smarter – For a While, At Least
Dena Dubal and Jennifer Yokoyama have been plucking at the thread of fate. The researchers at UC San Francisco are fascinated with a longevity gene named for one of the Greek Fates, Klotho.
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The GuardianGene Linked to Long Life Also Protects Against Mental Decline in Old Age
People who carry a mutated gene linked to longer lifespan have extra tissue in part of the brain that seems to protect them against mental decline in old age. The finding has shed light on a biological pathway that researchers now hope to turn into a therapy that slows the progression of Alzheimer’s disease and other forms of dementia.
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UCSFBetter Cognition Seen with Gene Variant Carried by 1 in 5 People
A scientific team led by the Gladstone Institutes and UC San Francisco has discovered that a common form of a gene already associated with long life also improves learning and memory, a finding that could have implications for treating age-related diseases like Alzheimer’s.
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NPRAnti-Aging Hormone Might Make You Smarter
Scientists say a hormone associated with longevity also appears to make people smarter. NPR’s Jon Hamilton reports that the finding out today could someday lead to drugs that improve memory and learning.
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NIHLongevity Gene May Boost Brain Power
Scientists showed that people who have a variant of a longevity gene, called KLOTHO, have improved brain skills such as thinking, learning and memory regardless of their age, sex, or whether they have a genetic risk factor for Alzheimer’s disease. Increasing KLOTHO gene levels in mice made them smarter, possibly by increasing the strength of connections between nerve cells in the brain. The study was partly funded by the National Institutes of Health.
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The EconomistA Potent Source of Genetic Variation in Cognitive Ability has Just Been Discovered
People are living longer, which is good. But old age often brings a decline in mental faculties and many researchers are looking for ways to slow or halt such decline. One group doing so is led by Dena Dubal of the University of California, San Francisco, and Lennart Mucke of the Gladstone Institutes, also in San Francisco. Dr Dubal and Dr Mucke have been studying the role in ageing of klotho, a protein encoded by a gene called KL. A particular version of this gene, KL-VS, promotes longevity. One way it does so is by reducing age-related heart disease. Dr Dubal and Dr Mucke wondered if it might have similar powers over age-related cognitive decline.
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The Wall Street Journal – Market WatchBrain games that could pay off in retirement
We all know that exercise helps keep our hearts healthy, but what keeps our brains in top form? Researchers are working overtime to answer this question, as the boomers grow older and a cure for Alzheimer’s disease remains elusive. The good news: Recent findings offer hope.
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Cell PressOutwitting the Fates: Klotho Can Boost Cognitive Function
In a paper just published in Cell Reports, Dena Dubal, Lennart Mucke, and their colleagues provide strong evidence that klotho enhances cognitive function, separate from its effects on aging. They started by looking at humans carrying an interesting variant of the KLOTHO gene. The variant was known to be associated with increased longevity, and the authors show that it leads to higher levels of klotho in the blood. Moreover, they show that carriers of the variant exhibit enhanced cognition, scoring higher on multiple tests of various aspects of cognitive function. The results suggest that systemic increases in klotho levels can improve cognitive function. So the authors took the experiments into mice. They found that elevation of klotho levels leads to improved learning and memory, seen in various tasks and shown not to be age-dependent. They went on to describe specific effects on synaptic function and plasticity that may account for the cognitive changes.
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MedscapeLongevity Gene May Boost Cognitive Function
A common variant of a gene associated with longevity may also improve learning and memory — and 1 in 5 people have it, a new study shows.
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ScienceDailyAnti-Aging Factor Offers Brain Boost, Too
A variant of the gene KLOTHO is known for its anti-aging effects in people fortunate enough to carry one copy. Now researchers find that it also has benefits when it comes to brain function. The variant appears to lend beneficial cognitive effects by increasing overall levels of KLOTHO in the bloodstream and brain.
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Huffington PostSingular Gene Could Increase Brain Power and Fight Off Dementia
A study funded partly by the National Institutes of Health says the KLOTHO gene is responsible for improved thinking, learning, and memory processes. The study, published last week in the journal Cell Reports used genetically engineered mice with higher-than-normal levels of the gene and discovered those mice had better memory recall. They also found the mice had more of the gene in the part of the brain which processes memories.
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ScienceDailyCollagen May Help Protect Brain Against Alzheimer’s Disease
Scientists from the Gladstone Institute of Neurological Disease (GIND), UCSF, and Stanford have discovered that a certain type of collagen, collagen VI, protects brain cells against amyloid-beta (Aβ) proteins, which are widely thought to cause Alzheimer’s disease (AD). While the functions of collagens in cartilage and muscle are well established, before this study it was unknown that collagen VI is made by neurons in the brain and that it can fulfill important neuroprotective functions.
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