Throughout life there is one thing that is always the same for everyone; we are all aging and getting older every second. And as we age we go from a new baby in perfect condition to fully functioning bodies as children, to having weak and brittle bone and wrinkles as elderly. But why do we get older?
As we grow, the cells in our bodies divide over and over again. When a cell’s proteins become deformed and clump together as it divides, the cell also has this damage, which is why your body becomes not as healthy as you get older. You have more cells with deformities. But one thing that has always been somewhat of a mystery is how humans who are in their 30’s and 40’s, who have plenty of cells with damage, are able to produce new healthy life.
One possibility for how this may happen, is because when an egg cell is about to be fertilized it cleans itself out of the bundled protein like becoming a new cell. Cynthia Kenyon reported and experimented on this small worms and frogs that have similar internal workings to our own. She would bring sperm near egg cells in the female worms and as soon as they were close the cells would begin to clean away the proteins in 30 minutes. The reasons that the oocytes (egg cells) clean out the proteins, is the sperm releases a chemical signal, that causes the protein in the cell to move. The proteins then are met with lysosomes that are meant to remove waste and digest the protein by pulling it into itself and creating an acidic environment that breaks down the protein. This can later be used to help to make the baby.
Cells may also restore themselves with stem cells that rejuvenate our cells, and scientists think that they may also use lysosomes to restore cells. This could help in so many different areas. This could be used in medicine to help eradicate different diseases and cancers to tell the damaged, old cells to repair themselves. This is only the beginning of our understanding of cells and rejuvenation.