Aged cells have significantly fewer food vacuoles and ingest fewer bacteria than young cells. Loss of food vacuoles was explained by a decreasing difference in the food vacuole formation and excretion rates; the formation rate declined more rapidly than the excretion rate, approaching equivalence at 160 fissions, when the proportion of cells with no food vacuoles, in the presence of excess food, abruptly increased. A model for cellular aging is presented in which control of organelle numbers and cyclical interactions between the nucleus and cytoplasm may be of critical importance.

This content is only available as a PDF.