How scientists are trying to extend human life

(ORDO NEWS) — Bowhead whales are one of the main long-lived mammals on Earth. They live up to 200 years, almost do not suffer from senile diseases, and in old age they multiply as intensively as during puberty.

The only indicator of animal aging is the presence of protein in the lens of the eye. The more it is, the cloudier the eye.

Updates for DNA

Scientists believe that people can become centenarians thanks to whales and mice. Researchers from the University of Liverpool are already in the process of transplanting the genome of bowhead whales into rodents and are waiting for the results.

They are sure that with such a DNA supplement, their wards will soon stop getting sick and grow old. As soon as the mice succeed, the next will be people.

“The whale is the only mammal in which the body slows down the damage to its DNA. Therefore, they live as long as possible. We will hack human DNA and prescribe updates for it.

We will change the rules of the game, and people will live for at least 200 years,” says microbiologist Juan Pedro de Magalhains.

Free radicals

The main cause of old age is disease. With age, they cling to a person one after another. It is not easy for the body to cope with this, and the person begins to fade.

“There are several theories of aging, and one of them is the theory of lipid peroxidation.

According to it, as a result of many chemical reactions, by-products, free radicals, accumulate in the body,” says biologist Maria Ignatenko.

Exercising and proper nutrition help prolong life. However, the main role is played by genes – you can not argue with them. Although some people have already succeeded.

The rejuvenation experiment

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Elizabeth Parrish is the head of a medical company in the United States. Seven years ago, she experienced an experimental gene therapy course to increase telomeres. These processes of chromosomes are responsible for youth, but decrease with age.

“I am sure that the future belongs to biotechnologies. My task is to do everything so that the future becomes available to everyone as soon as possible.

If the results of the experiment are successful, this will be a breakthrough for humanity,” Elizabeth Parrish shares her plans.

Six months later, the indicators pleased the scientists. Telomeres have increased, genetically Elizabeth’s body has become younger. Parrish herself felt the change.

“According to the latest data, over the years I have not aged, but I have lost almost 20 years.

I myself feel how my skin has become more elastic, and my hair is thick and silky. I have more and more energy every day. My muscles are in good shape”, – says the woman.

However, increasing telomeres does not get rid of wrinkles, but simply makes you feel better.

“Telomeres cannot turn a 40-year-old woman into a 20-year-old girl. This is not a miracle pill from science fiction films.

But your muscle tone will improve, muscle mass will not disappear with age. You will have to deal with wrinkles in some other way, although new ones will appear less frequently,” promises Parrish.

Unpredictable genetics

Most scientists do not share the optimism of the American. What actually consequences of therapy – is not known. The experiment on Elizabeth does not guarantee that another person will not become ill from such rejuvenation.

“Elizabeth can be considered a pioneer. She “sacrificed herself” for the sake of science, but it is not yet possible to draw unambiguous conclusions.

There are too many interactions between different genes. It is impossible to say for certain what changes will be caused by the impact on one or more genes.

The body operates in combination, and no one can predict the effect of selective interventions,” says geneticist Dmitry Chebanov.

Phenomenon of the island of Ikaria

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110-year-old Joanna Moriou from the Greek island of Ikaria has never dreamed of a cure for old age – too much to do. From morning to evening she sits at the loom or takes care of the house.

“We have so many things to do that we forget to die. My mother lived to be 111 years old. We have a lot of them on the island. Everyone is busy, so death does not stick to us,” explains Moriu.

Joanna is one of the long-livers of the island of Ikaria. There are more people over 90 here than anywhere else on the planet. Scientists have long been struggling with the riddle.

The local climate is no different from other regions of the Mediterranean, and people do not spoil themselves too much. Most of the deep old people work all their lives from morning to evening. However, residents also know how to have fun.

“Such studies are ongoing. They investigated the Caucasian longevity, but did not find a phenomenon as such.

They noticed that people move a lot, eat low-calorie foods, drink clean water and breathe fresh air. That’s all,” concludes the candidate of biological sciences, biotechnologist Alexey Odinets.

Life in Ikaria is so measured that the locals almost never get nervous. They are not familiar with stress and depression, they work slowly and relax with pleasure.

There are no harmful industries on this land, the food is always fresh, and the mood is good. Although geneticists admit that a certain “longevity gene” can be passed on from generation to generation among the islanders.


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