Medical Glucosamine and longevity

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Monique

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Glucosamine is linked to increased rates of autophagy (when a cell digests its own subcellular organs) and there is speculation that this could lead to increased life-span (because of increased self-renewal).

This is of course very interesting. I was wondering whether there is any evidence that taking supplementary glucosamine could have a positive effect on overall health and life-span?

Here is a reference paper: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20045674" [Broken]
 
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I can't find any human epidemiological studies that show glucosamine is linked to increased longevity. It has been used in the treatment of osteoarthritis for over 40 years but some recent studies have questioned its effectiveness in OA due to some subjective end points. In the following article regarding the role of O-GlcNAc in the epigenetic modulation of gene expression in C elegans, the authors suggest possible longevity benefits for humans.

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2867743/?tool=pubmed
 
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i'm also skeptical that glucosamine supplements even help arthritis in humans. the more likely explanation is that the frankincense included in common OTC preparations is what is really alleviating sufferers pain. reduction in pain will also reduce inactivity, which complicates matters even more.

however, if there is any increase in lifespan, you'd think there'd be some animal data, even if it hasn't been analyzed yet.
 
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however, if there is any increase in lifespan, you'd think there'd be some animal data, even if it hasn't been analyzed yet.
Although the authors claim the results should apply to all metazoa, the C elegans model seems to be a particularly good model to observe and account for the effects of GlcNAc in the acylation of epigenetic markers. This study was only published in April, 2010 so it's a little early for published studies in more complex models which, in any case, are more difficult to interpret.

What interests me more is the fact that glucosamine has been used in humans for around for 40 years and no information seems to be available from peer reviewed outcome based prospective or even retrospective (case-control) studies. I only did my searches today, but I would think that if there were some positive results out there, it would be pretty important and therefore easy to find.
 
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Although the authors claim the results should apply to all metazoa, the C elegans model seems to be a particularly good model to observe and account for the effects of GlcNAc in the acylation of epigenetic markers. This study was only published in April, 2010 so it's a little early for published studies in more complex models which, in any case, are more difficult to interpret.

What interests me more is the fact that glucosamine has been used in humans for around for 40 years and no information seems to be available from peer reviewed outcome based prospective or even retrospective (case-control) studies. I only did my searches today, but I would think that if there were some positive results out there, it would be pretty important and therefore easy to find.
imo, it's hard to find much research in countries like the US on substances that are already unpatentable. poorer countries, those that are a little less capitalist seem to do more basic nutrient science, ime. if it's strontium for bones, you've got a make it a ranelate salt. fish oil for cardiovascular? add an ethyl ester to it.

if you want real research on it, you'll probably have to go somewhere like india. and then you've also got the issue of differences in lifespan of cats/dogs/horses to humans, so you've got to keep this going for many many years. maybe it's not so much the money as the impracticality? and then, of course, even though you can do it on the cheap in an impoverished nation, nutrition studies there are complicated by the already poor diets.

or am i being too cynical?

don't know a whole lot about the worm, but iirc, those are the same critters used for the calorie restriction studies, and i'm pretty skeptical about that research applying as well to humans, too.
 
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imo, it's hard to find much research in countries like the US on substances that are already unpatentable.
I don't agree. There's been a substantial increase in funding in the US for epidemiological studies on a wide variety of environmental exposures over the last 40 years. By environmental, I mean almost anything in the environment that might impact health for better or worse: diet, drugs, chemicals, electromagnetic sources, climate, etc. Prior to that, epidemiology was primarily concerned with communicable and infectious diseases.

The problem is that the quality of the studies has varied because private special interest funding has also increased and, while some form of epidemiological methodology is usually applied, these studies are not published in internationally recognized peer reviewed journals but do get into the popular domain via commercial advertising or non peer reviewed publications resulting in a fair amount of "junk science".

Also false positive and false negative results will occur more often in observational studies than in randomized trials even with the best design and execution. Therefore, one study should never be taken as the last word on a new finding. Replication is necessary. Randomized trials are the gold standard, but they can only be done where assigned treatment (or exposure) and non treatment can be ethically and practically done.
 
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yeah, not too impressed with epidemiology. especially guys like campbell and his china study conclusions about animal protein. not US, i know, but still, i think epidemiology pretty weak and easily misused.
 
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yeah, not too impressed with epidemiology. especially guys like campbell and his china study conclusions about animal protein. not US, i know, but still, i think epidemiology pretty weak and easily misused.
So do you think the Framingham studies, the CAST studies and a number of other international collaborative studies are pretty weak? Do you have any basis for making that statement? Do you have any idea of what you're talking about?
 
So do you think the Framingham studies, the CAST studies and a number of other international collaborative studies are pretty weak? Do you have any basis for making that statement? Do you have any idea of what you're talking about?
enlighten me. what are the resulting clinical studies on basic nutritional interventions that are ongoing now? stuff that is recognized as important. i know it goes on, because i've followed stuff like vitamin D. but then i'll come here and post about the findings, and practically get shouted down by people who think i'm trying to promote quack medicine or help supplement companies get rich selling something as dirt-cheap as D3.

and i'm not completely against epidemiology, but it only gives you a place to look. unless you actually go and do an intervention like the DASH diet study, you just don't know.
 

rhody

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Glucosamine is linked to increased rates of autophagy (when a cell digests its own subcellular organs) and there is speculation that this could lead to increased life-span (because of increased self-renewal).

This is of course very interesting. I was wondering whether there is any evidence that taking supplementary glucosamine could have a positive effect on overall health and life-span?

Here is a reference paper: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20045674" [Broken]
Monique,

Not to step on the discussion going on between SW and Proton_Soup, I have been taking http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/glucosamine/NS_patient-glucosamine" [Broken] for instance have a high amount of cartilage tissue) and seem to be resistant to many forms of cancer.

Here is an interesting find in a http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2003/08/0820_030820_sharkcancer_2.html" that hypothesizes that a sharks immune response functions, essentially, "quicker" as indicated below:
"In mammals, a brief lag time follows exposure to foreign substances before immune cells are produced in the bone marrow and mobilized into the bloodstream to fight off the invaders," Luer explained. "In sharks, the immune cells are produced in the spleen, thymus, and in unique tissues associated with the gonads and esophagus. Our studies at MOTE in collaboration with researchers at Clemson University have determined that a significant number of immune cells in these animals actually replicate (divide and mature) as they circulate in the bloodstream. Immune cells already in the shark's blood may be available to respond without a lag period, resulting in a more efficient immune response."
Rhody...
 
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Monique

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I haven't yet had the time to look into it further or get into the replies (I definitely will). I just wanted to add that autophagy was originally described as a cellular response to starvation and we all know that dietary restriction is linked to longevity (both in C. elegans and in Rhesus monkeys). It makes me wonder whether this starvation-induced longevity is caused by, or dependent upon, the upregulated glucosamine-dependent autophagy.
 

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