The fountain of youth may actually be in a cocktail of drugs that were part of a new study on aging.
A recent article in Longevity’s Science Research announced that the biological age of nine male volunteers, between 51 and 65 years of age, had been reversed by 2.5 years after they had taken the drugs for one year.
The study took place at the University of California. The scientists who conducted the study had expected the drugs to possibly slow the aging process so they were shocked at the surprising results.
About the Combination of Drugs
The volunteers were given two types of diabetes drugs and a form of growth hormone for one year. The team had intended to study the drug combination with respect to tissue restoration of the thymus gland. The thymus gland is responsible for powering the immune system.
Since the thymus gland normally shrinks after puberty, the team had intended to see if the growth hormone could cause it to regrow.
Prior to the study, blood samples were collected from the volunteers. This procedure continued throughout the study and for six months after it had concluded.
The samples revealed that the drugs had indeed regenerated the thymus tissue. According to the scientists, the volunteers’ immune systems were “remarkably rejuvenated”.
The drugs also reversed the volunteers’ “epigenetic clocks” which refer to the biological signs of aging in the body.
The scientists point out that epigenetic age is not a measurement of every feature of aging but it presents the best biological measure to date.
On Second Thought . . .
Although not planned initially, the researchers decided as a second thought to analyze the volunteers’ epigenetic clocks.
Four measures of the epigenetic clock were taken and the scientists discovered that each volunteer showed a significant reversal of the aging process.
The body’s epigenome measures the epigenetic clock (biological signs of age) which records chemical changes to the DNA. Chemical modifications (tags) are added to DNA as a person ages.
Since the tags are ever-changing, scientists can measure someone’s biological age by observing the tags.
The scientists acknowledged that not all measurements of aging are calculated by epigenetic age but as of today it is considered most accurate.
All Things Considered
All volunteers showed a continuation of benefits up to six months after the end of the study. Various combinations of the drugs are now being researched to fight age-related disorders.
The team leaders point out that although there were only nine volunteers who participated in the study, the results were so impressive that they are very optimistic. However, a substantial amount of research is still needed to confirm these findings.
If confirmed, the impact on healthcare would be powerful.
What is your opinion about reversing the aging process in our lifetime?