Would you consider shutting down some of your genes if it meant you could stay young and healthy? In a new study featured on Science Daily, researchers have found that certain gene expressions may be “turned off” in order to slow down aging.

Using an algorithm inspired by how low calorie levels slow down human degeneration, PhD student Keren Yizhak from Tel Aviv University's Blavatnik School of Computer Science and her colleagues managed to predict and segregate yeast genes that can be “turned off” so that the old genes can seem young and healthy again.

Some of the identified genes have already been known to extend yeast’s lifespan, but further analysis revealed that turning off the genes GRE3 and ADH2 may also aid in its survival.

While yeast is a favored genetic model because much of its DNA is preserved in humans, it’s still too early to tell how effective the procedure would be for real people. Yizhak hopes that in the future, drugs created based on the algorithm may help humans cope better with metabolic and degenerative disease. For now, the best way to fight premature aging is by watching your calorie consumption, eating healthy, and exercising regularly.


(Photo by Allen Skyy via Flickr Creative Commons)

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