Thermodynamics of Aging and Heredity


A brief review of the author’s works in the sphere of thermodynamic theory of aging is presented. Particular attention is given to justification of the methods of classical and near-equilibrium “dynamic” thermodynamics used to assess the direction and extent of ontogenesis. It is noted that discovery of the law of temporal hierarchies and the substance stability principle made it possible to use quasi-equilibrium thermodynamics to describe aging of organisms and evolution of the living world. The review contains certain examples confirming thermodynamic direction of the origin of life and its development. The author states that supramolecular thermodynamics is the foundation of modern epigenetics. The review shows that the environment affects the composition and structure of the genetic apparatus as well as gene expression through the mechanisms of hierarchical thermodynamics. The author discusses the influence of “nutritive molecules” and other biological substances on tissue composition. It is noted that “nutritive molecules” can have an epigenetic influence on DNA and genetic apparatus as a whole. The author gives recommendations regarding nutrition and use of medicines from the perspective of the thermodynamic theory of aging. Though the author used simplifications and approximations when developing the thermodynamic theory of living beings’ aging, the theory is in agreement with the detected correlation between changes in the specific Gibbs free energy of supramolecular structure formation and changes in the chemical composition of body tissues during aging. The author believes that hierarchical thermodynamics is the foundation of Darwinian natural selection.

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Gladyshev, G. (2015) Thermodynamics of Aging and Heredity. Natural Science, 7, 270-286. doi: 10.4236/ns.2015.75031.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.


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