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Genes Activated Later Stage In Life Protects Body From Stress, Aging

Update Date: Feb 27, 2017 08:20 AM EST

Genes linked to the biological clock are activated later in life are found to protect a person's body from stress and aging, according to a new study. The genes are also thought to appear during extremely stressful times and may help the body fight cancer and other degenerative neurological diseases.

The research conducted by Oregon State University found that the genes in focus, known as late life cycle genes are part of a unique stress response system.  Researchers used fruit flies to examine the activity of at least 25 late life cycles genes. As the body ages, the genes continue to increase in their rhythmic activity.

The discovery of the genes that are activated in late stage in life highlights the importance of maintaining the status quo of biological clock or the circadian rhythm.  Synchronized by the light and dark cycle of the 24 hour day period, the genes were traced throughout eons of evolution.

Researchers found that frequent disruptions of the rhythm of the genes have been linked to shorter lifespan and even cancer. David Hendrix, co-senior author of the study, said that then "discovery of LLC genes may provide a missing link, the answer to why the disruption of circadian clocks accelerates aging symptoms."

In the study, the researchers created an artificially induced oxidative stress to disrupt communication between cells in the young fruit flies. The technique is done when the genes became active.

The oxidative stress in humans has been linked to a number of illnesses which includes Alzheimer's and Parkinson's diseases. According to Jadwiga Giebultowicz, the late life cycler genes appear to become active and sometimes respond to some stresses common in aging. Humans in later stages in life often experience cellular and molecular damage, oxidative stress and some known diseases.

As humans starts to age, there is neural degeneration, loss of memory and other problems. The late life cycle genes are part of the natural response that can help protect the body's nervous system.

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