X-Message-Number: 14551
Date: Tue, 26 Sep 2000 15:51:25 EDT
Subject: caloric restriction benefits without the pain

>On Fri, 22 Sep 2000 11:28:35 -0400 John Clark  wrote:
> In today's (Sept 22)  issue of Science Dr. Leonard Guarente
> reports that he's found exactly why caloric restriction leads to
> longer life; at least he's found the mechanism that works yeast
> and strongly suspects the same thing is true of all life. Caloric
> restriction has extend the life of every species it has been
> tested in.
> The key is a gene called SIR2 , the protein it produces clads
> to parts of the DNA helix, covering it up and in effect turns off
> other genes that are supposed to be turned off.  But for the
> gene to make this cladding protein it needs a substance called
> NAD, and it turns out NAD is also used in glucose metabolism,
> so if you eat a lot there is less NAD available to make this very
> important cladding protein.
> There is talk of a pill. Geneticist Tomas Prolla referring to life
> extension says "I don't think a 30 to 40% range should be
> considered some kind of maximum.

>Great news, if true!

>The next step, I reckon, is boosting levels of NAD to see what happens.

>What exactly is NAD?

  NAD is nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide. As stated in the paper in 
SCIENCE, there are two ways to make it: out of niacin, and out of quinolic 
  Thanks for posting the info on the paper by Guarente. By taking niacin (as 
part of a multivitamin, of course) and lowering blood glucose levels (by not 
eating carbos most of the day, drinking ginseng, etc.; there are various 
techniques, but no serious life extensionist goes around with high blood 
sugar) we are probably getting most of the benefits of caloric restriction.

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