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.
The National Academy of Medicine announced today the election of 70 regular members and 9 international members during its annual meeting. Election to the Academy is considered one of the highest honors in the fields of health and medicine and recognizes individuals who have demonstrated outstanding professional achievement and commitment to service. Dr. Thomas Rando was among those elected.