CNN Video Clips

Topic: "Is Aging Treatable?": Biology 8th Ed. CNN Ed 2004 (2:25)
An ongoing study is designed to gauge the effect of drastic caloric reduction on human aging. The study was inspired by the results of similar dietary restriction studies in primates. The animals lived longer and maintained more youthful hormone levels and immune function. What could explain these effects? With low caloric intake, cells throughout the body seem to die more slowly and repair themselves more easily. Also, fat around the stomach increases the chances of getting cancer and heart disease. One participant in the human study, now in her forties, says she joined the National Calorie Study because she is interested in being a healthy senior. She has cut her caloric intake, and researchers will be monitoring how her body responds over the course of a year. The worksheet includes the URL of a Why Files feature describing the primate studies on which the human trials are based. (Student worksheet provided on CD)

Topic: "Brain Fitness": Biology 8th Ed. CNN Ed 2004 (2:16)
Cardiovascular exercise can slow the loss of brain tissue that is associated with aging. Researchers at the University of Illinois studying the MRI (magnetic resonance imaging) results of people over age 55 found a correlation between fitness level and memory loss. Certain brain areas were shown to deteriorate more slowly in people who are more fit. New York University researchers found that glucose regulation is associated with memory function. In those with poor glucose regulation, the hippocampus, which is involved in memory, tends to be reduced in size. The worksheet includes the URL for the National Institute on Aging website. (Student worksheet provided on CD)


In Search of the Secrets of Aging.  1993.  National Institutes on Health & National Institute on Aging.  NIH Publication. 
The book reviews topics in aging including genes that code for long life, cell senescence, physiological adaptations to aging, and biochemistry of aging.  Large diagrams aid in lesson acquisition, especially related to telomere length and DNA damage and repair.