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Natural A.G.E. Protection


[Cellular Senescence & Aging | Glycation & A.G.E.'s]
[The Antidote: L-Carnosine | L-Carnosine Research | References]

Intervention in the aging process -- at one time regarded as fantasy -- is now viable and extremely rewarding due to scientific breakthroughs. By understanding the mechanisms of aging, we can address their negative effects.

One of the most valuable components of any anti-aging program -- possibly the crown jewel -- is the amino acid compound, L-CARNOSINE. No other single nutrient has such profound effects on two fundamental aging processes: cellular senescence and glycation.

Senescence occurs when older cells, unable to rejuvenate, become deformed and unable to function at previous levels. Glycation, the breakdown of protein by sugar, produces highly reactive A.G.E.'s (advanced glycation end products). The result: signs of normal aging such as impaired memory, vision, or muscle function, and loss of skin elasticity.

L-CARNOSINE may prevent or reverse cellular senescence, and may reduce glycation, according to in vitro research.

Cellular Senescence & Aging

Our cells regenerate themselves by dividing to form new pairs of cells. As we age, however, the life span of cells shortens as they reach limits in their ability to divide. Aging cells become senescent: their appearance is distorted and they may behave in deviant ways. Some scientists theorize that cellular senescence is key to the aging process itself.

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Glycation & A.G.E.'s

Glycation is another normal part of the aging process, in which the proteins and DNA in our body interact with glucose. This eventually leads to the formation of cross-linked structures called advanced glycation end products (A.G.E.'s). A.G.E.'s increase oxidative stress and protein degradation, both of which play a large role in typical age-related changes such as skin wrinkling and brain degeneration.

The Antidote: L-Carnosine

L-CARNOSINE is a dipeptide made up of the amino acids, beta-alanine and L-histidine. L-CARNOSINE is found in high concentrations in our brains, muscle and other tissues. There it offers protection against harmful protein-sugar reactions, as well as against lipid peroxidation and the toxicity of metals such as copper.

As we age, the levels of L-CARNOSINE in our body decrease, leaving our cells more vulnerable to the effects of glycation. Meat is the major dietary source of L-CARNOSINE. As a result, vegetarians may be especially subject to low L-CARNOSINESINE levels.

L-Carnosine Research

In recent years, science has expanded our understanding of the role played by L-CARNOSINE in protecting our bodies against age-associated glycation and cellular senescence.

  • L-CARNOSINE has been found to rejuvenate connective tissue cells that were approaching senescence, according to human cell culture studies. Cells cultured with L-CARNOSINE lived longer and retained a normal appearance and growth patterns.

  • L-CARNOSINE has been found to reduce glycation and A.G.E. formation, and to help support healthy brain tissue, according to in vitro studies.

  • High levels of L-CARNOSINE in muscle tissue have been found to correlate with decreased oxidative damage, according to animal research, and to significantly inhibit protein and lipid oxidation, according to in vitro studies.

  • L-CARNOSINE was shown to be a powerful chelator of copper in vitro.

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Brownson, C. and A. R. Hipkiss. 2000 Free Rad Biol Med 28(10): 1564-1570. Hipkiss, A.R. et al. 1998. Ann NY Acad Sci 854: 37-53.

Kantha, S.S. et al. 1996. Biochem Biophys Res Commun 223(2): 278-82.

McFarland, G.A. and R. Holliday. 1994. Exp Cell Res 212(2):167-75,

McFarlond, G.A. and R. Holliday. 1999. Exp Gerontol 34(l): 35-45.

Takashi, N. et al. 2001. Mol Cell Biochem 225(1): 29-34.


© 2002 Source Naturals, Inc., P.O. Box 2118, Santa Cruz, CA 95063

Reprinted with exclusive permission from Source Naturals, Inc.

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