How to Cure Aging – During Your Lifetime-on the way to immortality

Health is the most important thing we have, but we tend to forget it until we lose it. We're living older than ever before, which is great, but an unexpected consequence is that we spend more of our lives being sick. Becoming old means spending more time in suffering. Scientists are therefore trying to get the attention of the medical community to move from improving "lifespan" to improving "healthy lifespan", the part of our life in which we are not sick. To do this, we have to tackle the main cause of most of the problems in the human body: aging itself.

Unknown to most people, the science of aging has made huge strides in recent years, and human testing will begin in the near future. Let's look at three examples of discoveries that people who are currently alive may benefit from.

1: Senescent cells.

Your cells have an expiration date. Each time one of your cells divides, it copies its chromosomes. Due to the nature of the process, they lose a little bit of DNA on the ends. This could be catastrophic, so to protect them, we have long sections of DNA called "telomeres" which are like the plastic tip on the laces, but they shrink with each division. In some cells, after too many divisions, the telomeres disappear, and the cell becomes a zombie, a senescent cell. Senescent cells stay alive, and do not die. The older you get, the more you have. They damage the tissues around them and are linked to many senile diseases such as diabetes or kidney failure.

Photo by Birmingham Museums Trust on Unsplash

 What if it was possible to kill them?

 Scientists have genetically modified mice that can destroy their senescent cells as they please. Elderly mice without senescent cells were more active. Their hearts and kidneys worked better, and were less likely to develop cancer. On average, they live 30% longer - and healthier - than ordinary mice. Since we cannot genetically modify every cell in the human body, we have to find another way to get rid of our senescent cells.

 But how do you kill them without damaging healthy cells?

 Most cells initiate scheduled suicide when damaged, but senescent cells do not. It turns out that it under-produces a protein that tells them when it's time to die. In a study at the end of 2016, this protein was therefore injected into mice. It killed 80% of their senescent cells, while sparing healthy cells. The treated mice became healthy again and the hair even started to grow again. As a result, new companies are looking for treatments on senescent cells, and the first tests on humans will begin soon.

2: NAD + Cells

They are made up of hundreds of millions of elements. It is the structures, machines, messages and catalysts that cause the reactions. All of these things need to be destroyed, cleaned and rebuilt all the time. As we age, this process becomes less efficient, and elements derail, accumulate, are cleaned more slowly, or become too few for our needs. One of these is NAD +, a coenzyme that tells our cells to take care of themselves. At 50, we only have half of what we had at 20. Small amounts of NAD + are linked to a range of diseases, from skin cancer to Alzheimer's, including heart disease and some sclerosis. But NAD + cannot penetrate cells, so we cannot ingest it via a pill. However, scientists have noticed that certain flexible substances can penetrate cells, and transform into NAD + inside.

 In 2016, multiple trials on mice demonstrated an acceleration of the multiplication of stem cells from their skin, brain and muscles. They were rejuvenated, were able to better repair their DNA, and had a slightly increased longevity. This even interested NASA, who are looking for a way to minimize the damage to DNA suffered by astronauts from cosmic rays during missions to Mars. There are human trials planned right now, but it is a little early to say if it will lengthen our health, or even our life altogether. But NAD + is a serious candidate and could become the first anti-aging pill for humans.

 3: Stem cells

 Stem cells are like foreground cells that sit in various places in the body and reproduce to supply it with fresh cells, but their numbers decline with age, and so we deteriorate. Without spare parts, the human body is damaged.

In mice, scientists have noted that when the stem cells in their brains disappear, they develop diseases. So they took stem cells from mice brains and injected them directly into middle-aged mouse brains. More specifically, the hypothalamus, a structure involved in the regulation of a host of mechanisms. New stem cells have invigorated brain cells by secreting micro-RNAs that have regulated their metabolism. After 4 months, the brain and muscles worked better than those of untreated mice, and on average lived 10% longer. Another study took stem cells from mouse embryos and injected them directly into the hearts of older mice. As a result, their hearts worked better, they were able to exert 20% longer, and strangely their hairs began to grow faster. What all of this shows is that there is no miracle pill to cure aging. It takes a complex arrangement of therapies.

We can kill our senescent cells to clean up, give us new stem cells to fill in the holes, while regulating the metabolism of other cells via drugs. After all, these studies were done in mice. There is no guarantee that the same treatments would work the same with us, but these are demonstrations. To learn more about how to extend our healthy lifespan, we need human trials. We have only covered a fraction of the research done today, and simply scratched the surface of these concepts. The area of ​​youth outreach requires more attention and funding. If he gets them, we could all enjoy a painless end to life.

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