Encyclopedia of Aging and Public Health

2008 Edition
| Editors: Sana JD Loue, Martha Sajatovic

Accumulative Waste Theory of Aging

  • Jessica Diggs
Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-0-387-33754-8_6

The accumulative waste theory of aging, also known as the waste accumulation or garbage accumulation theory of aging, proposes that molecules damaged by oxidation and their byproducts (e.g., aged collagen, damaged enzymes), and damaged mitochondria (organelles responsible for cellular energy production) accumulate in postmitotic (nondividing cells) causing dysfunction, toxicity, aging, and cell death (see Free‐Radical Theory of Aging). There are several mechanisms by which garbage accumulation affects cells. The presence of waste products changes the structural organization of the cell. Cellular components are displaced by these waste products and cellular functions such as cell signaling, transport of cellular molecules, and metabolic functions are impeded. Accumulation of waste materials within the cell can also cause damage, secondary to their toxicity, for example by the accumulation of toxic protein oxidation products in the cell or by an increased amount of reactive oxygen...

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Suggested Readings

  1. Hayflick L (1994) How and why we age. Ballantine Books, New YorkGoogle Scholar
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jessica Diggs

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