From Big Medical Encyclopedia

GERONTOLOGY (grech, geron, geront[os] the aged man + logos the doctrine) — the section of biology and medicine studying patterns of aging of living beings including the person. The Soviet scientists, as well as the majority of the European, consider that the biology of aging (is G.'s part see. Old age, aging ), geriatrics (see), gerogigiyena (see) and gerontopsikhologiya (see).

Problem of biology of aging — clarification of primary mechanisms of aging, establishment of their interrelation in the course of life activity of an organism, definition of age features of adaptation of an organism to the environment. Studying of biology of aging are the cornerstone pilot studies on animals with various specific life expectancy and a wedge. - fiziol. researches of people during the different periods of life. Studying of the general and specific organisms of different types in aging, definition of patterns and mechanisms of aging in evolution is closely connected with questions of biology of aging. Studying of biology of aging is of great importance for the correct understanding of genesis of the diseases characteristic of persons elderly and «senile age, their correct therapy and development of measures of rational prevention. E.g., it is established that age changes of the growing old organism often can promote development of many patol, processes (atherosclerosis, an arterial hypertension, onkol, diseases, a late diabetes mellitus, chronic diseases of lungs).

Modern G. is closely connected with many sections of biology and medicine. Almost in each industry the wedge, medicine and in social medicine appeared gerontol. problems.

G.'s development is connected not only with achievements of science, with implementation of new perfect methods of a research, but also is steadily dictated by deep demographic shifts, the sharp and quickly progressing postareniye of the population of economically developed countries. The last circumstance demands considerable changes in the organization of medical aid to the population.

One of the first the doctor and the statesman of Russia of 18 century I. B. Fischer who wrote the book «About an Old Age, Its Degrees and Diseases» (1754) addressed studying of a question of longevity from positions of the specific facts. Several editions were run by P. Engalychev's book «About extension of human life. How to reach a healthy cheerful and extreme old age» (the first edition in 1801). Publications of a row of scientific 19 century — I. P had a certain value. Kamensk (1812), L. O. Wangnoti (1818), etc.

A specific place in the history of G. is held by mass inspection aged (2240 people), carried out under the leadership of S. P. Botkin in St. Petersburg in 1889. Results of this of a research unique during this period were stated in work of the pupil Botkin of A. A. Kadyan (1890); they exerted considerable impact on G.'s development in general and biology of aging of the person in particular. The view of aging stated by Botkin as on a natural fiziol, the process which is not connected surely with existence of diseases division of aging on physiological and pathological gave the chance to speak about perspectives in fight for active longevity of the person.

An original ancestor of modern scientific G. was I. I. Mechnikov. It possesses a merit in experimental studying of aging. Animal experiments on clarification of influence on an organism of the toxicants which are formed under certain conditions in an organism of animals and the person were the first attempt to receive a pilot model of an old age. I. I. Mechnikov considered a senile atrophy from positions of the doctrine about phagocytosis, looked for ways of intervention in this process for preservation of parenchymatous fabrics. I. I idea. Mechnikova about a role of autointoksikatsionny processes in mechanisms of aging though underwent criticism (A. V. Nagorny, 1945, etc.), however gained further development in works of his pupil Korenchevsky (V. Korenchevsky, 1961) and it turned out very fruitful, having defined one of the directions modern.

The big contribution to development of the Soviet gerontology was made by A. A. Bogomolets. Estimating age changes at the cellular and system levels, it attached the leading significance in mechanisms of aging of connecting fabric. Proceeding from the ideas of a role of connective tissue elements in metabolism of parenchymatous cells and reactivity of an organism, A. A. Bogomolets considered that the changes of connecting fabric accruing with age inevitably are reflected in a condition of an organism. For prevention of a senilism A. A. Bogomolets recommended to act on fabric with small doses of the antireticular cytotoxic serum (ACS). Still in the thirties A. A. Bogomolets wrote that aging of protoplasm of cells is a consequence of maturing of the cellular colloids forming biochemical inert complexes — the flokkulyata incapable of a redispergirovaniye and breaking cell activity. In these works modern views for a role of changes of a proteinaceous molecule in genesis of aging were partly foreseen. Broad development in modern G. was found by A. A. Bogomolts's views of adaptation opportunities of the growing old organism and their influence on life expectancy.

In disclosure of mechanisms of molecular changes during the aging works of the Kharkiv school of ontofiziolog (A. V. Nagorny, I. N. Bulankin, V. N. Nikitin) are of great importance. A. V. Nagorny (1940) made a hypothesis of the disturbance with age self-updates of proteins leading to decrease in functions of an organism, to its aging; proteinaceous connections with low level of metabolism which at the same time appear reduce formation of energy.

An important role in development gerontol. researches played works of school of I. P. Pavlov which laid the foundation of modern ideas of century of N of, opened forms of regulation of adaptation of an organism by Wednesday and established the principles of relationship between a brain and endocrine glands. Developing I. P. Pavlov's doctrine about experimental neurosises, M. K. Petrova in a long-term experiment showed a role of functional disturbances of century of N of in development patol, processes and a senilism. patol, processes in development of a senilism a number of works of I. V. Davydovsky is devoted to researches of a role.

G.'s development in our country had the following features: biol, an orientation of searches of mechanisms of aging at which the main attention was paid to theoretical questions and experimental biol. to researches; ontogenetic approach to a problem, aspiration to reveal the patterns and factors characteristic of the entire period of an ontogeny, the final stage to-rogo is an old age; studying of mechanisms of neurohumoral regulation of exchange and functions of the growing old organism, its mental activity, the analysis of age changes from positions of self-control.

The deep analysis of social aspects of a problem of aging, a research of age changes at the molecular, cellular, system levels, and also search of interrelation between these changes and clarification of the uniform mechanism of aging of a complete organism is characteristic of the Soviet G.

Large milestones in world G.'s development were: the organization under the direction of A. A. The pilgrim and N. D. Strazhesko in 1938 to the USSR (Kiev) of the scientific conference devoted to problems of aging, prevention of a presenility, the analysis of the state of health of long-livers of Abkhazia according to an expedition of 1937; the publication in 1939 in the USA E. Cowdry's books of the «Problem of aging» which for the first time generalized literature on all aspects of aging; the edition in Leipzig since 1938 of the first magazine according to G. «Zeitschrift fur Alternforschung» under the editorship of M. Byurger — the founder of school is mute. gerontologists, author of the book «Altern und Krankheit» (1947). The end 30th and 40th were the period of blossoming of G. in many countries of Europe and in the USA.

G.'s development is defined by achievements of the general biology and first of all development of ideas of mechanisms of transfer of genetic information, biosynthesis of protein, about patterns of regulation of exchange and functions of an organism.

The Soviet gerontologists pay much attention to molecular and genetic changes in process of aging. It is established that during the aging intensity of the RNA updating, communication of DNA with histones changes, the condition of chromatin changes, the speed of updating of separate proteins decreases.

Serious changes are revealed in structure of separate cells and fabrics. Exchange and structural changes lead to the essential changes of function of cells limiting their adaptive opportunities.

Studying of the age changes in neurohumoral regulation affecting aging of bodies and fabrics became the most important direction of domestic G. V. V. Frolkis (1970) developed the adaptatsionnoregulyatorny theory connecting aging with primary shifts in regulatory genes and subsequent changes in system of neurohumoral regulation of exchange and functions of an organism. During the aging reaction of fabrics to nervous influences goes down, on humoral — increases; the intra central ratios and gipotalamo-pituitary influences change, exchange of hormones is broken. V. G. Baranov (1966), B. A. Vartapetov (1965),

V. M. Dilman (1968), A. F. Makarchenko (1963), N. V. Svechnikova (1964) consider that shifts of neurohumoral regulation play an important role in a climacteric.

The big complex of researches of theorists and clinical physicians is devoted to age changes of cardiovascular system (N. I. Arinchin, 1972, H. N. Gorev, 1972, H. N. Kip-shidze, 1963, S. V. Korkushko, 1968, A. V. Tokar, 1972, etc.). Clarification of the shifts caused by age in the blood circulatory system deepens ideas of an etiology and a pathogeny of diseases of cardiovascular system at advanced and senile age. During the studying of age changes of various systems of an organism D.F. Chebotaryov (1967), N. V. Lauer (1963), I. B. Mankovsky (1972), E. P. Podrushnyak (1972) and others tracked a geterokhronnost of aging.

Wide-ranging studies according to G. were developed in scientific centers of many countries. In F. Vertsar (1963), Katler, Silard, Khan, Streller's works (R. Cutler, 1960, L. Szilard, 1959, H. P. Hahn, 1972, B. Strehler, 1964) and other scientists much attention is paid to the analysis of the programmed and mutational changes in the genetic device. Essential significance in the mechanism of aging is attached to shifts at the cellular and molecular levels. Heyflik (L. Heyflick, 1972) assumes communication between aging of an organism and mitotic potential of the sharing cells.

Implementation of elektronnomikroskopichesky methods allowed Andrew, Sato, Franks (W. Andrew, 1952, T. Sato, 1955, L. M of Franks, 1954) and to others to reveal changes in ultrastructures of a cell. Birren (J. Birren, 1955), F. Burliyer (1960), Abdomen (G. Bruschke, 1971), H. Shock (1955), Emmerich (R. Emmerich, 1963) features of functional systems of the growing old human body study.

From priorities of G. it is possible to call the following: studying of molecular and genetic mechanisms of aging, examination physical. - chemical and structural transformations in nucleinic to-takh, establishment of age changes of regulation of the genetic device, identification of communication between age changes of biosynthesis of protein and function of cells; studying of mechanisms of neurohumoral regulation of exchange and functions of an organism, clarification of adaptive opportunities of an organism in the course of aging; complex studying of features of aging of the person and on its basis development of the measures directed to increase in working capacity and duration of work of elderly people; search of the influences which are slowing down rate of aging and increasing life expectancy.

In the USSR scientific center on problems of aging is Ying t of gerontology of the USSR Academy of Medical Sciences organized in Kiev in 1958. It has experimental G.'s department where the biology of aging at the different levels — molecular is studied, cellular etc., and also a wedge, departments where are studied dynamics fiziol. aging and feature of a course of diseases at elderly and old people. Ying t is head in the USSR on a problem «Gerontology and geriatrics» and leading in committee on coordination of researches of problems G. in the socialist countries. Ying-that works at base department of gerontology and geriatrics Kiev in-that improvements of doctors.

The large centers developing problems G. in various aspects are Ying t of biology at Kharkiv where problems of age biology in the wide ontogenetic plan, G.'s sector are developed at Belarusian AN in Minsk which is generally conducting researches in the field of experimental G. (comparative and evolutionary G.).

In the 60th years in many countries of the world were organized in-you G. (geriatrics), department G. (geriatrics) at a medical f-takh of high fur boots, gerontol. centers. Wide popularity was gained by researches of the Romanian scientific academician K. Parkhon and his school (A. Aslan, etc.).

The organization of the International association for gerontology (MAGICIAN) in 1950 exerted a great influence on G.'s development in the countries of Europe and America. The first congress the MAGICIAN took place in Liege (Belgium) in 1950 with participation of representatives from 14 countries. In the next years (1951 — 1969) 7 more congresses were carried out. The IX International congress of gerontologists passed in the Soviet Union (Kiev) in 1972. Representatives of 45 countries of the world took part in its work (apprx. 3000 participants). The international congresses organized it biol are carried out to the period between the congresses the MAGICIAN., wedge, and social research committees of Europe and America. By 1973 the MAGICIAN 34 countries of the world, national about-va gerontologists, were members.

In a number of the countries (the USA, the USSR, GDR, Germany, Sweden, etc.) annually national congresses and conferences on

G. V the Soviet Union in 1963 are held it was organized All-Union scientific about-in gerontologists and geriatricians; since 1967 it is a member the MAGICIAN. It is organized more than 20 republican and city scientific about-in gerontologists and geriatricians.

In 12 countries 28 magazines according to G. and geriatrics are issued. In 1951 in the USA «The systematized bibliography on gerontology and geriatrics» with additions in 1957 and 1963 and quarterly appendices in «Journal of Gerontology» in the next years was published. The literature according to G. published in the USSR is systematized in the bibliographic index under the editorship of V. N. Nikitin in 1958 and is reflected in the year-books published Ying volume of gerontology of the USSR Academy of Medical Sciences.


Guides and reference media — Alexandrov M. D. Problems of social and psychological gerontology, L., 1974; The Leading problems of the Soviet gerontology, under the editorship of D.F. Chebotaryov, etc., page 3, Kiev, 1972, bibliogr.; Age physiology, under the editorship of V. N. Nikitin, L., 1975; Gerontology and geriatrics, the Year-book, under the editorship of D.F. Chebotayev, etc., Kiev, 1968 — 1974, bibliogr.; Grmek M. D. Gerontology — the doctrine about an old age and longevity, the lane with horvatsk., M., 1964, bibliogr.; Davydovsky I. V. Gerontology, M., 1966, bibliogr.; Dubinina T. L. and Reasons and p A. H. Introduction to experimental gerontology, Minsk, 1975, bibliogr.; A. Biologiya's comfort of aging, the lane with English, M., 1967; I. I. Swordsmen. Etudes of optimism, M., 1913; Mountain A. V., Nikitinv. N ibulankin I. N. Problema of aging and longevity, M., 1963; Nikitinv. H. Domestic works on age physiology, biochemistry and morphology (Historical sketch and bibliography), Kharkiv, 1958; Fundamentals of gerontology, under the editorship of L. Bing and F. Burlyera, the lane with fr., M., 1960; Fundamentals of gerontology, under the editorship of D.F. Chebotaryov, etc., M., 1969, bibliogr.; P and r x about K. I N. Age biology, the lane from Romanians., Bucharest, 1959, bibliogr.; Strehler B. Time, cells and aging, the lane with English, M., 1964, bibliogr.; Frolkis V. V. Aging and biological opportunities of an organism, M., 1975; Bourlidre F. Progrfcs en g6ron-tologie, P., 1969; Brtischke G. Moderne Alternsforschung, B., 1971, Bibliogr.; K o-renchevsky V. Physiological and pathological aging, N. Y., 1961; Shock N. W. A classified bibliography of gerontology and geriatrics, suppl. 1 — 2, Stanford, 1951, 1957—1963.

Periodicals — Acta gerontologica, Milano, since 1950; Acta gerontologica Belgica, St. Idesbald-aan-zee, since 1963; Acta gerontologica Japonica, Tokyo, since 1961; Ageing and Human Development, Detroit, since 1970; Excerpta medica, Section XX — Gerontology and Geriatrics, Amsterdam, since 1958; Experimental Gerontology, N. Y., since 1964; Gerontologia, Basel, since 1957; Gerontologia clinica, Basel, since 1959; Giomale di Gerontologia, Firenze, since 1952; Journal of Gerontology, St Louis, since 1946; Problems on a geron-tologiyat and a geriatriyat, Sofia, since 1965; Zeitschrift fur Alternsforschung, Dresden, since 1938.

f. Chebotaryov.