Bill Gatesʼ views

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But not all bil­lion­aires are im­pressed. Bill Gates has branded the no­tion of rich peo­ple seek­ing im­mor­tal­ity as “ego­cen­tric”, point­ing to the mil­lions of peo­ple liv­ing with lifethreat­en­ing dis­eases. Global ef­forts to find the se­cret to the evo­lu­tion of age­ing leaves open the pos­si­bil­ity that age­ing could be stopped if only sci­ence could fig­ure out a way to make se­lec­tion be­tween or­gan­isms per­fect. One way to do that might be to use com­pe­ti­tion be­tween cells to elim­i­nate poorly func­tion­ing “slug­gish” cells

linked to age­ing, while keep­ing other cells in­tact. How­ever, the so­lu­tion is not that sim­ple. “Age­ing is math­e­mat­i­cally in­evitable. There is log­i­cally, the­o­ret­i­cally, math­e­mat­i­cally no way out,” says Dr Joanna Masel, pro­fes­sor at the Univer­sity of Ari­zona, US.

“Two things hap­pen to

“One is that cells slow down and start to lose func­tion, like when your hair cells, for in­stance, stop mak­ing pig­ment. The other thing that hap­pens is that some cells crank up their growth rate, which can cause cancer cells to form.” As we get older, we all tend at some point, to de­velop cancer cells in the body, even if they are not caus­ing symp­toms, say the re­searchers. They found that even if nat­u­ral se­lec­tion were per­fect, age­ing would still oc­cur, since cancer cells tend to cheat when cells com­pete, adds Dr Nel­son.

the body on a cel­lu­lar level as it ages,” says Dr Paul Nel­son, an­other mem­ber of the Ari­zona Univer­sity re­search group.

“One is that cells slow down and start to lose func­tion, like when your hair cells, for in­stance, stop mak­ing pig­ment. The other thing that hap­pens is that some cells crank up their growth rate, which can cause cancer cells to form.” As we get older, we all tend at some point, to de­velop cancer cells in the body, even if they are not caus­ing symp­toms, say the re­searchers. They found that even if nat­u­ral se­lec­tion were per­fect, age­ing would still oc­cur, since cancer cells tend to cheat when cells com­pete. “As you age, most of your cells are ratch­et­ing down and los­ing func­tion, and they stop grow­ing, as well,” adds Dr Nel­son.

Why then, han­ker af­ter im­mor­tal­ity? Live life as it is. En­joy it.

Shah Rukh Khan still looks young at the age of 52.

Bo­tox does not di­rectly treat the wrin­kle. It re­duces mus­cle ac­tiv­ity that form the wrin­kle.

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