Friday, August 3, 2012

Australian researchers compare humans to fruit flies to find out why Women Outlive Men – no really!

         Good Day Humboldt County!

What’s all the buzz about? I’ll tell you.

I’d like to know why scientists are always using weird test subjects to study men and women?

What’s with using fruit flies – like in the following article – to find out why men die sooner than women? You can’t tell me our anatomies are even vaguely alike, so why fruit flies?

It was bad enough using chimps to study our similarities, but insects are crossing the line! What’s next? Octopuses? The fact that all animals possess mitochondria is good enough for this group of researchers. I have a sudden urge to swat the researchers!

(HealthDay News) -- New research reveals that mutations to the DNA of the mitochondria cause men to age faster than women -- a finding that may explain why women, on average, outlive men.

The researchers from Monash University in Australia examined male and female fruit flies that carried mitochondria -- the part of the cell that converts food into energy -- of various origin. They found that genetic variation in the mitochondria predicted life expectancy in males, but not in females. The investigators concluded that several mutations within the DNA of mitochondria affect how quickly men age as well as their longevity.

Intriguingly, these same mutations have no effects on patterns of aging in females. They only affect males," Dr. Damian Dowling, from the Monash School of Biological Sciences, said in a university news release. "All animals possess mitochondria, and the tendency for females to outlive males is common to many different species. Our results therefore suggest that the mitochondrial mutations we have uncovered will generally cause faster male aging across the animal kingdom."

The mutations result from the way mitochondrial genes are passed down from one generation to the next, the study authors noted.

"While children receive copies of most of their genes from both their mothers and fathers, they only receive mitochondrial genes from their mothers. This means that evolution's quality control process, known as natural selection, only screens the quality of mitochondrial genes in mothers," explained Dowling. "If a mitochondrial mutation occurs that harms fathers, but has no effect on mothers, this mutation will slip through the gaze of natural selection, unnoticed. Over thousands of generations, many such mutations have accumulated that harm only males, while leaving females unscathed."

The study authors said they plan to continue their research and explore ways to negate the genetic mutations that negatively affect men's life expectancy. The study was published Aug. 2 in Current Biology. The U.S. National Library of Medicine has more about genetics.

Time for me to walk on down the road…


davoid said...

Why botheer posting about something you have neither understood nor tried to understand? Why would you want to wave your pig ignorance around like a banner of idiocy for all to see?

And what the fuck's with that hat, guy?

Anonymous said...

The researchers are missing the point. Ok, female fruit flies live to 70 years and males 60. BUT that is FIXED, where it happens every single time. But in humans sometimes the female dies before her husband etc. It is NOT fixed in humans. So obviously it is nonsense. And besides the gulf of 10 years between male and female fruit fflies is 10% more but with humans it is only 3 or 4%. It's not even comparable. And to say men age faster, it is women's faces that grow older more than a mans does. Men grow old gracefully, but a womans looks soon go.

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