Pretreatment with a stem-cell-activating protein significantly enhances healing in mice, Stanford researchers say. The approach could eventually help people going into surgery or combat heal better from injuries they sustain.
Can billions of dollars’ worth of high-tech research succeed in making death optional?
Researchers at the Salk Institute in California have successfully induced cells to behave like younger cells.
At the Salk Institute in La Jolla, Calif., scientists are trying to get time to run backward. Biological time, that is. In the first attempt to reverse aging by reprogramming the genome, they have rejuvenated the organs of mice and lengthened their life spans by 30 percent. The technique, which requires genetic engineering, cannot be applied directly to people, but the achievement points toward better understanding of human aging and the possibility of rejuvenating human tissues by other means.
Stem cells produce a decoy protein to attenuate growth signals. Artificially regulating this pathway might help keep muscles supple in muscular dystrophy or during normal aging, researchers hope.