Secret to Prolong Ageing Discovered

Friday, February 05, 2016

Elixir of Youth

A study published in the journal ‘Nature’ reports that US scientists from Mayo Clinic have likely figured out the ‘elixir of youth’ that could slow down the process of ageing. This has been claimed after a successful experiment on mice, which increased up to 35% of their lifespan.

Researchers achieved this breakthrough by clearing out senescent cells that no longer divide but accumulate with age and have a negative and destructive impact on the body. When senescent cells were removed from the genetically modified mice, the rodents lived 25% to 35% longer. Additionally, they were healthier and their hearts and kidneys functioned better than those left to age naturally. Their body tissues and bones also took less damage from the inflammation in fat.

However, scientists are sceptical about its performance in humans as the research relied on genetically modified mice. “Senescent cells are old, defective and no longer divide. They can still do harm, however, by secreting molecules that damage neighbouring tissues and trigger chronic inflammation. Although the immune system sweeps them away regularly, this process becomes less effective with time,” said Dr. Darren Baker who led the research. Removal of the senescent cells, however, did not have an impact on most of the effects of ageing such as motor performance, muscle strength and memory.

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