Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Fruit Flies Who Do It More Live Longer

You know what they say about how doing the deed regularly prolongs your lifespan? Well, the jury’s probably out as far as the effects of frequent sex for humans go, but when it comes to fruit flies, that adage is very likely to be true.

A new study from researchers at the University of Michigan shows that fruit flies that had more sex enjoyed better health, and get this, longer lives.
In fact, male fruit flies that perceived the pheromones of female flies, without mating, saw significant reductions in fat stores, resistance to hunger, and more stress. In short, these sexually frustrated were miserable, and lived shorter lives.

In contrast, fruit flies that mated more experienced a partial reversal of these negative effects on health and aging. According to Scott D. Pletcher, Ph.D, senior author of the study, he and his colleagues’ findings provide a better understanding on how physiological states and sensory perception come together in the brain to make biological changes to health and lifespan. Dr. Fletcher is a professor at the U-M Medical School’s Department of Molecular and Integrative Physiology and U-M Geriatrics Center.

Dr. Fletcher notes that with the cutting-edge neurobiology and genetics employed in the research, it can be theorized that, at least for fruit flies, the myth of sexual frustration being a health issue may not be a myth after all. Expecting sex and not getting the reward, being left hanging, had a distinct correlation to the health and lifespan of fruit flies.

Could it be the same for humans?

Read the full story on Science Daily.

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