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The Effect of Glucose and Sucrose as Dietary Additives on the Lifespan of Wild-type and GAPDH Mutant Caenorhabditis Elegans
2011 VIRTUAL SCIENCE FAIR ENTRY
Obesity is epidemic. Consequently, incidents of heart disease, diabetes, and cancer have skyrocketed, decreasing lifespan. The increase in obesity and related diseases is largely due to increased consumption of sugar-like substances.Wild-type and GAPDH mutant Caenorhabditis elegans (C. elegans) were used as model organisms to determine the effect of sucrose and glucose on humans’ lifespan. A diet supplemented with glucose and sucrose was hypothesized to significantly reduce the lifespan of both wild-type and GAPDH mutant C. elegans due to disruption in normal carbohydrate metabolism. C. elegans were monitored daily to determine lifespan. Both wild-type and GAPDH mutant C. elegans had significant (to the 0.01 confidence level) reductions in lifespan when grown in the presence of sucrose or glucose. When grown in the presence of glucose or sucrose, GAPDH mutants and wild-type C. elegans had comparable life spans, suggesting that sugar consumption inhibits GAPDH function, which can lead to adverse development and metabolism. Thus, sugar consumption decreases lifespan and consumption of sugar-like substances must be decreased to maintain or increase human longevity.
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