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Aging human bodies and aging human oocytes run on different clocks along different pathways

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Published on Dec 6, 2011

Aging human bodies and aging
human oocytes run on different
clocks along different pathways.

People may scan the mirror anxiously
for the first gray hair or wrinkle, but
the cruelest sign of aging for half the
human race is visible only on the calendar.
When women pass the age of 35, their
chances of infertility, miscarriage, and birth
defects rise precipitously, driven by the aging
and resulting quality decline of their eggs
(oocytes). Reproductive cessation in women,
which now occurs before the midpoint of
modern life spans, stands in sharp contrast
to aging in the rest of the body's cells, called
somatic cells. The question is, why?

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