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Cellular senescence is so important when we discuss aging and cancer because as our cells accumulate damage, which naturally happens as we age there are only so many outcomes that we can expect. The first possibility is that the cells can die. The next is that they can become senescent where they stop dividing but stay alive all-the-while secreting molecules that influence surrounding tissue… or the worst of all possible outcomes, the cells can really go off the rails and become malignant. Accumulating senescent cells is inevitable but there are varying strategies of how to tackle senescence and this is of great interest to the field of aging. There are ways to clear out senescent cells with drugs or even dietary and lifestyle interventions. Not only are there ways to kill senescent cells, there are also ways to influence what sort of molecules they produce, possibly limiting the inflammatory ones… even without killing them. To learn more about this…watch the episode of my podcast with Dr. Judy Campisi. She talks about the role of cellular senescence in the aging process and cancer, what causes senescence, and how viable lifestyle interventions (ie. fasting) and certain compounds (ie. senolytics) that can clear senescent cells may be plausible life extension strategies. Campisi episode: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=adg3vUez3EU

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