Some hypothesize that aging in humans is a cumulative process of macromolecular and mitochondrial damage starting years, even decades before any symptoms arise. Aging may begin when the rate of damage exceeds the rate of continual repair and turnover. Quality control for damaged mitochondria entails cellular digestion by mitophagy, a specialized kind of autophagy. Insufficient protective autophagy could cause damaged cellular components to accumulate over many years until they affect normal function in the ce…
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