Aging: The continuous process from birth to death

November 29, 2003 (Bethesda, MD) -- A special series, "Highlighted Topics on The Physiology of Aging," appears in the October through December 2003 editions of the Journal of Applied Physiology, the flagship publication of the American Physiological Society (APS). The series examines the physiological changes associated with aging based on a systems approach, and theories of the aging process and underlying mechanisms are explored.

Two featured articles are published in the October 2003 edition:

  • The first, entitled "Bone Adaptation with Aging and Long-Term Caloric Restriction in Fischer 344 x Brown-Norway F1-hybrid Rats," is from the study conducted by Jeremy M. LaMothe, Russell T. Hepple, and Ronald F. Zernicke, all of the University of Calgary, Calgary, Alberta, CN. Using a specific rat model and a caloric restriction paradigm, the investigators examined the effects of age and caloric restriction on bone geometry and the mechanics of the vertebrae and tibiae. They found that aging produced small changes in bone mechanics and geometry in ad libitum-fed animals, while caloric restriction effected bone's mechanical and geometrical properties to a greater extent. Caloric restriction-induced body mass reductions accounted for changes in vertebral structural properties, but the alterations in tibial structural properties were independent of body mass. Thus, the researchers conclude that caloric restriction adversely and differently influenced axial and appendicular bones in late-middle-aged animals. Despite the salutary life-extending effects of caloric restriction, their results also offer a cautionary note suggesting that caloric restriction may have possible adverse effects on the structural and mechanical properties of bone.
  • The second report, "Effects of Aging on Cerebrovascular Tone and [Ca2+]i," examines whether cerebral artery tone and intracellular Ca2+ concentration ([Ca2+)i] are affected b

Contact: Donna Krupa
American Physiological Society

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