03/12/2009

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Quentin Cooper looks into the science underlying extending healthy life and asks if you can live longer without dietary restriction and with parents of different sexes.

He also hears about the latest from the Large Hadron Collider experiment at CERN.

What's the toughest bacterium in the world? One of those battling it out for the title is Deinococcus radiodurans. It was discovered in the 1950s after surviving in cans of food after they had been bombarded with radiation. Its ability to repair its own DNA means it could be used in the future to reclaim land contaminated by nuclear or chemical events. Quentin finds out how scientists are uncovering the secrets behind its ability to survive extreme temperatures, severe dehydration and lethal doses of radiation. Understanding how bacteria like Deinococcus coordinate their arsenal of defence mechanisms could help scientists overcome the defences of dangerous, disease causing bacteria.

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26 minutes

Last on

Thu 3 Dec 2009 16:30

Inside Science

BBC Inside Science

Adam Rutherford explores the research that is transforming our world.

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