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Quicklook at Medicine by Ian Grandison

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Chapter Two: The body

The human body can be viewed as the most remarkable thing on the planet. Every cell contains the DNA which operates as the entire, unique, blueprint for the individual. This is a lot of blueprints: the body contains many trillions of cells. Every type of cell dies during the life of an individual, and is usually replaced by a healthy replica. Different types of cell have different life expectancies. For example there is very little cell turnover in the complex structures associated with vision. Once established, these are largely fixed for life. Brain cells do reproduce, but unless stimulated they can die again. The rate of cell reproduction throughout the body diminishes with age and can be affected by diet, exercise and ...

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