Sunday, November 20, 2011


Wine News

Resveratrol - a chemical found in grape skins and other fruit - has been linked to all sorts of health benefits in a number of studies over the past decade.  A Wine Spectator article now suggests that while resveratrol may well have an impact against cancer, diabetes, heart disease and dementia, the recent idea that it may help increase lifespan is getting a suspicious eye from researchers.

Studies showed that resveratrol activated proteins called sirtuins - which regulate cell metabolism.  Those studies are being discounted after more studies showed that the increased longevity brought on by sirtuin activation is possibly due not to
resveratrol, but to a different mutation which occured during the experiments.

This is bad news for the pharmaceutical companies that have poured millions upon millions of dollars into resveratrol as a "fountain of youth" drug.

David Gems, a geneticist at University Collge London, says, "We found that sirtuins don't actually increase lifespan in the animals that we looked at, the nematode worms and fruit flies.  This suggests that even a drug that did activate sirtuins would not slow aging."

Resveratrol is still seen as a viable agent against some diseases, so drinking red wine in moderation is still considered a healthy thing to do.  The notion that wine contains a "silver bullet" to combat aging, however, is no longer widely held in the scientific community.

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