Cooler biologically compatible core body temperatures may prolong longevity and combat neurodegenerative disorders

Med Hypotheses. 2006;66(3):636-42. doi: 10.1016/j.mehy.2005.07.021. Epub 2005 Dec 2.


Scientific evidence suggests the critical role of temperature in regulating three mechanisms contributing to cellular damage: Oxidative stress, oxygen demand overload and inflammation. In this article, we propose that the Arrhenius rate law has a profound impact on aging and a variety of neurodegenerative disorders including Alzheimer's disease, and we review the supporting evidence. Published studies suggest empirical correlations between temperature and lifespan of various organisms, bolstering the hypothesis that variations in lifespan may stem from differences in the mitochondrial production rates of radicals - a process also influenced by temperature. Given the exponential temperature dependency of all biochemical factors, cooler body temperatures may promote longevity and combat neurodegenerative disorders. This promises to offer extraordinary yet unexplored weapons against two formidable enemies of the human body: aging and neurodegenerative disorders. Stated in the form of a thesis referred to as Salerian and Saleri Temperature Thesis (SSTT): "Cooler biologically compatible core body temperatures prolong lifespan and are of value to combat illness". Double blind studies of SSTT in therapeutic strategies against amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) or early-stage Alzheimer's disease may offer a reasonable first stage to validate SSTT. In view of the known rapid progressive neurodegeneration associated with ALS, minute variations in core body temperature may, in fact, demonstrate statistically significant differences in disease progression.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Body Temperature
  • Caloric Restriction
  • Humans
  • Inflammation
  • Models, Biological
  • Models, Theoretical
  • Myocardial Infarction / therapy
  • Neurodegenerative Diseases / pathology
  • Neurodegenerative Diseases / therapy*
  • Oxidative Stress
  • Risk Factors
  • Stroke / therapy