Scientists Increased Mice Lifespan By 20 Percent. Could Do The Same For Humans
Sep 01, 2013 17:56
Researchers at the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute (NHLBI) are on their way to extending lifespans by 10-15 years. The scientists have successfully extended the lives of mice just by changing a single gene.
The scientists used gene expression, taking information from a gene to synthesize a gene product. The mice were engineered to produce only 25% of the normal amount of protein from the mTOR gene. Scientists believe that gene controls metabolism and energy levels, and the mice grew up smaller than their peers but lived longer by nearly 20 percent.
In humans, an increased lifespan of 20% would raise the average lifespan by about 15-16 years.
Scientists also discovered that individual organ and body parts reacted differently to the process in engineered mice: aging is not a uniform progress. Bones and organs deteriorated at a different rate.
The research done with these mice could help with developing better therapies for diseases that are age-related, such as Alzheimer's. More studies are needed beyond this point before it becomes anything concrete just yet, so for now, just live healthy first.
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