Researchers out of Harvard Medical School and Massachusetts Institute of Technology have developed a new approach to potentially combat the disease of aging. Their findings were posted in the journal Aging. The scientists deployed six chemical cocktails known to have some anti-aging potential and tested them on rats and monkeys. Findings show the aging process was halted within four days of treatment.
From the abstract of the article in Aging:
A hallmark of eukaryotic aging is a loss of epigenetic information, a process that can be reversed. We have previously shown that the ectopic induction of the Yamanaka factors OCT4, SOX2, and KLF4 (OSK) in mammals can restore youthful DNA methylation patterns, transcript profiles, and tissue function, without erasing cellular identity, a process that requires active DNA demethylation. To screen for molecules that reverse cellular aging and rejuvenate human cells without altering the genome, we developed high-throughput cell-based assays that distinguish young from old and senescent cells, including transcription-based aging clocks and a real-time nucleocytoplasmic compartmentalization (NCC) assay. We identify six chemical cocktails, which, in less than a week and without compromising cellular identity, restore a youthful genome-wide transcript profile and reverse transcriptomic age. Thus, rejuvenation by age reversal can be achieved, not only by genetic, but also chemical means.
From Giant Freaking Robot:
The team, led by Harvard Medical School faculty member David Sinclair, is currently preparing for such tests, which could represent a significant leap in anti-aging science.
When tested on specialized cellular cultures, the researchers noticed a reversal of certain markers of aging, specifically the deterioration of nucleocytoplasmic compartmentalization.
The foundation of the de-aging research stems from the study of molecules capable of “reprogramming” animal cells into pluripotent stem cells. These stem cells can differentiate into various cell types, making them a promising candidate for regenerative medicine.