There are some diseases, which are related to ageing. Cataract, diabetes, arthritis, scleroderma, osteoporosis, atherosclerosis, arteriosclerosis, Alzheimer's disease, strokes and neurological disorders are some examples.
These diseases are rapidly induced in Werner's syndrome. Ageing-associated diseases are genetically triggered and have underlying mechanisms in common. The discovery of such common pathways may provide targets for the development of drugs to treat one or more of the diseases of ageing. The discovery of ageing-related genes may lead to the development of novel and effective drugs and cosmetic products representing multimillion-dollar markets.
AGENE Research Institute Co., Ltd. is focusing on research of individual ageing and cellular ageing. They are investigating the cloning and the functions of Werner's syndrome genes and regulatory genes in cell proliferation. These approaches will give the answers about the mechanism directing diseases resulting from ageing. They are going to develop screening system of therapeutic drugs and the assay system of ageing genes expression, which will contribute the development for new therapeutics against ageing associated diseases.
LifeSpan's gene discovery technology is aimed at identifying disease-associated genes for use as therapeutic or diagnostic targets. The technology is designed to determine gene expression, localization and function, and to provide information to identify the best potential drug targets. Because LifeSpan's technology is highly flexible, it can be applied to solve a partner's particular problems within a specific disease area of interest, an approach best described as "customized genomics." Besides finding new disease-associated genes and drug targets, LifeSpan's technology
Damaging effects of free radicals
. damage to cells occurs,
· protein synthesis becomes impaired,
· proteins become cross-linked and tangled,
· tissues become less pliable,
· arteries incur damage leading to atherosclerosis,
· genetic material (DNA/RNA) is damaged leading to possible cancer development and to inefficient repair processes,
· age pigments accumulate which literally drown the cells in lipofuscin, preventing them from functioning, and
· in general all the signs and indications of ageing are promoted, whether this is stiffness, poor circulation or wrinkles (cross-linkage), not to mention diseases such as atherosclerosis, arthritis, cancer and, it is now believed, Alzheimer's disease,
· responsible for the damage which occurs in cataracts due to cross-linkage of proteins, :
· Oxygen free radicals can also damage DNA, which if it is not repaired, could give rise to altered, mutant proteins. Free radicals degrade tissue strengthening collagen within the bodies' joints, skin and organs.
Free radicals are implicated in more than 80 diseases, ageing, inflamation of joints and other tissues, Improper functioning of circulatory, nervous and immune systems. Arthritis, Rheumatism, Cancer, Heart problems, Parkinson's disease, Asthama, Diabetes, Alzheimer's disease, Stress etc. are disorders in which role of free radicals is implicated.
This destructive process of oxidation is the result of the work of free radicals in the body. We have natural defenses (enzymes) against free radicals but they may get overwhelmed. Therefore antioxidants in nutrition can come to the rescue.
'Pycnogenol' is extract of bark of French Maritime Pine. It contains powerful antioxidants - Proanthocyanidines. A natural combatant of that process is to be found in grape skin and seed extract (proanthocyanidins) - a major ingredient contained in Alenol which offers protection for the health of our entire circulatory system.
Alenol contains grape seed extract which provides a rich source of the nutrient that inhibits free-radicals and the destructive process of oxidation which takes place in the human body and results in the ageing process. Alenol wages war on wrinkles. Scientists are a step nearer to developing a drug, which could extend the average lifespan to 120.
The Canadian scientists (John Phillips, professor of molecular biology at Guelph University in Canada) have found a way of postponing the natural ageing process and increasing life expectancy by up to 40 per cent. The group was investigating the ageing process of fruit flies when it made the discovery.
Researchers believe that the finding will give clues into how our bodies break down and die. When an improved version of the gene for superoxide dismutase was given to fruit flies they lived up to 40 per cent longer. Years of research will be needed before the technique can be tried out on humans. Gene Therapy on flies in Raj Sohel's laboratory, giving extra genes for SOD (superoxide dismutase) and catalase showed extra 1/3 life than control.