Nautilus

Physics Makes Aging Inevitable—A Response to Comments

When I published Life’s Ratchet four years ago, I was focused on how life can create and sustain highly ordered systems in the presence of the surrounding molecular chaos—how molecular ratchets, in other words, “extract order from chaos.” To my surprise, the book generated great interest in the area of aging research. Aging, says Ed Lakatta, chief of the Laboratory of Cardiovascular Science at the National Institute on Aging, extracts “chaos from order.”

As part of this surprising interest, I was recently invited to write an article for Nautilus, which generated a considerable volume of comments, including this comment

You're reading a preview, sign up to read more.

More from Nautilus

Nautilus4 min read
What an Extinct Bird Re-Evolving Says About “Species”
You may have heard the news of what sounds like a resurrection story on the small island of Aldabra, off the coast of Madagascar. Around 136,000 years ago, the island was submerged in water and a layer of limestone captured the rails—a species of fli
Nautilus5 min read
What Ancient Romans Used Instead of Toilet Paper
We’ve all been caught unawares by our digestive tract at one time or another. It happened to the Nash family several months ago. We were nearing the end of an extended road trip, driving down a secondary highway through a sparsely populated area of C
Nautilus10 min read
Yes, Determinists, There Is Free Will: You make choices even if your atoms don’t.
It’s not just in politics where otherwise smart people consistently talk past one another. People debating whether humans have free will also have this tendency. Neuroscientist and free-will skeptic Sam Harris has dueled philosopher and free-will def