Telomeres: The Key To Aging And Cancer?

Telomeres: The Key To Aging And Cancer?

Telomeres: The Key To
Aging And Cancer?

Inside the nucleus of a cell, the genes are arranged along twisted, double-stranded molecules of DNA called chromosomes. At the ends of the chromosomes are stretches of DNA called telomeres, which protect our genetic data, making it possible for cells to divide, and hold some secrets to how we age and get cancer.

Telomeres have been compared with the plastic tips on shoelaces, because they keep chromosome ends from fraying and sticking to each other, which would destroy or scramble an organism’s genetic information.

Yet, each time a cell divides, the telomeres get shorter. When they get too short, the cell can no longer divide; it becomes inactive or “senescent” or it dies. This shortening process is associated with aging, cancer, and a higher risk of death. So telomeres also have been compared with a bomb fuse.

About The Author

Katherine Baltazar

I am a media reporter writing for the Hair, Beauty and Spa Industry. I've been writing and covering salons, beauty products and hair treatments for the pace 5 years.