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Cell-cell communication predicts aging, senescence and death: an integrated, predictive evolutionary approach

John S. Torday


None of the extant theories of aging have proven to be effective in advancing our knowledge of senescence or mortality. In contrast to the gene-centric focus on evolution, the mechanism of cell-cell interactions as the driving force for evolution as the logic of biology is proposed. Since the distribution of  bioenergy over the course of the life cycle is skewed towards the reproductive phase, bioenergy flags in the post-reproductive stage of life, causing failure of cell-cell signaling, loss of homeostatic control, senescence and death. In the interim, the phenotype acts as the ‘agent’ for epigenetic inheritance, obtaining ‘marks’ that inform the organism of changes in the environment. Such marks are inherited by the offspring, providing it with foreknowledge of the environment to come. The organism appears to ‘return’ to the unicellular state over the course of the life cycle, but in reality meiosis is the mechanism of epigenetic inheritance, the adult phenotype being the means for transmitting the epigenetic marks obtained from the environment back to the organism.


senescence; death; cell-cell communication; growth factor-receptor; phenotype as agent

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About The Author

John S. Torday
Evolutionary Medicine, Harbor-UCLA, Torrance, CA
United States

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