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Autophagy: How Your Body Renews Itself

Autophagy: How Your Body Renews Itself

The 2016 Nobel Prize for Medicine went to Yoshinori Ohsumi, a Japanese cell biologist who discovered how cells recycle their contents in a process known as autophagy. Greek for "self-eating," autophagy involves a cell breaking down its components—whether for extra energy or to get rid of damaged parts—and it happens during starvation, infection, and just general cellular housekeeping. Learn a more about how your body cleans house in the videos below.

The Immune System Explained

Autophagy plays an important role in your immune system.

Kurzgesagt - In a Nutshell
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Key Facts In This Video

  1. See the specific jobs of the cells of your immune system, and the complex ways they interact with each other: 00:17

  2. When killer T-cells go through their training process, only a quarter survives. 03:17

  3. Billions of antibodies flood into infections, disabling by bacteria by latching onto them. 05:15

Your Body's Real Age

Your cells are constantly being recycled, but not at the same rate.

Skunk Bear: Science From NPR

What Happens When You Stop Eating?

Starvation is well known to cause autophagy. Here's what that looks like in reality.

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