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Part: 6 Picture Perfect > Term Paper #2 - Pg. 348

Sample Term Papers 348 Our bodies produce antioxidants which combat free radicals and repair free radical damage, and antioxidants are also present in certain foods, especially vitamins C, E, and A ( Dietary Manipula- tion). However, after a point the antioxidants simply cannot keep up with the amount of free radical damage inflicted. When cells become irreparably fractured by free radicals, they die, which results in human aging ( Man Immortal ). Free-radical damage is also responsible for diseases such as cat- aracts, heart disease, and some cancers (Kotulak and Gomer). Caloric restriction counteracts these age-causing processes. So, if fewer calories are ingested, which causes a gene to tell the metabolism and respiration to slow down, fewer free radicals will be produced in the mitochondria, so cells will undergo less oxidative damage, and life will be extended, which is how caloric restriction treatment works. Ongoing Experimentation Calorie restriction experiments have now been performed on organisms ranging from water fleas to guppies to monkeys (Weindruch 46). One ongoing experiment that seems significant is currently being done on rhesus monkeys at the University of Wisconsin at Madison with funding from the National Institute on Aging. Since the monkeys ordinarily live to be around 40 years old, it will be some time before end results are seen, but scientists already observe the effects of calorie restriction in blood pressure, cholesterol, and basic observed markers of aging in the 17-year-old monkeys (Mlot 162). This experiment is considered to be particularly important because of the primates' close relation to humans. Scientists will be able to more accurately predict what results of calorie restriction on humans could be by observing the rhesus monkeys over the next few decades. A similar ex- periment using squirrel monkeys has also been underway since 1987 in Baltimore, Maryland ( Di- etary Manipulation). Application in Humans When Roy Walford finished his preliminary experiments on mice, he knew that he had stumbled