|Chinese Scientists Find Secrets of Cell Aging (02/01/2002)|
Chinese scientists say they have determined the P16 gene is the major link in the genetic program of cell aging, a major step in deciphering the secret to growing old.
Han Qide, an academician at the Chinese Academy of Sciences, described this genetic discovery on Thursday as an original contribution to Chinese research on the mechanism of aging. Han said it opened up a new path for the scientific community to decode the secret of human cell aging.
Using funding from 18 different sources over the last few years, the discovery was made by a group of experts headed by Tong Tanjun and Zhang Zongyu, professors from the Medical Department of Peking University.
The American Journal of Biological Chemistry published two papers on the research results last December, and they were included in the "Science Citation Index."
The two Chinese experts said they also found the P16 gene can affect the life span of cells and the cellular biological clock length.
The experts also proved by four different means that controlling the expression of the P16 gene not only prolongs the life span of the cell and reduces the level of aging but also slows down the shortening of the cellular biological clock length.
(Xinhua News Agency February 1, 2002)