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Showing posts from July, 2015

CAN WE RESTART THE HEART

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In a way, trying to repair age-related heart damage and trying to fight cancer are opposite problems. Your heart cells' ability to regenerate themselves and proliferate into new, young cells degrades as you get older. They simply lose their proficiency at cell division. Cancer cells, on the other hand, are too good at proliferating. They don't know when to stop, and the overgrowth results in tumors. This is all very simplified, of course, but it's the basic model described by Mark Sussman, chief research scientist at the San Diego State University Heart Institute, who was recently selected by the American Heart Association's Basic Cardiovascular Science division to receive this year's Distinguished Achievement Award. The heart in particular seems to be resistant to developing cancerous cells. "When's the last time you heard of anyone having heart cancer? It's almost unheard of," said Sussman. That's not surprising from an evolutionary standpoint. …