JayVay

Tighten Up or the Zombie Genes Will Get You

by Guest Blogger,
Tyler Kokjohn, Ph.D. 

Tighten brainWhat happens when we die?  This immensely interesting question has been answered in several different ways.  The scientific study of death is challenging and results acquired from near death experience (NDE) subjects have produced controversy, not consensus.  However, scientists have managed to figure out quite a few things about how our cells die and sometimes, refuse to die (1).

Our understanding of the death process is rudimentary and a recent study of dead animals yielded some unexpected results (2, 3).  These scientists were working under a general assumption that the transcription of genes into RNA (gene expression) would cease quickly after death as physiologic failures mounted.  Examining animals that were indisputably and irreversibly dead, their experiments revealed a wide range of brain and liver genes actually became more active during the post mortem period.  Some…

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