How would we do it? By using viruses as tiny aestheticians
A new discovery about the effects of aging in our cells could allow doctors to cure or prevent diabetes, fatty liver disease and other metabolic diseases – and possibly even turn back the clock on aging itself.
The new finding from the University of Virginia School of Medicine suggests that fatty liver disease and other unwanted effects of aging may be the result of our cells’ nuclei – the compartment containing our DNA – getting wrinkly. Those wrinkles appear to prevent our genes from functioning properly, the UVA researchers found.
There’s no wrinkle cream for nuclear membranes, but there is a tantalizing possibility: We might use viruses to smooth the membranes’ surfaces – and restore the cells to functioning as they did in the glow of youth.
The new discovery from the lab of Irina M. Bochkis, PhD, of UVA’s Department of Pharmacology, shows that the location of our DNA inside the cell’s nucleus is critically important. Genes that are turned off are shoved up against the nuclear membrane, which encases the nucleus. But with age, our nuclear membranes become lumpy and irregular, and that prevents genes from turning off appropriately.
“We have the same DNA in every single cell but each cell is different,” Bochkis explained. “So how does that work? Well, actually, certain genes need to be on in the liver and they have to be turned off in the brain, for example, and vice versa. If they’re not turned off appropriately, then you have problems.”
Looking at a model of fatty liver disease, Bochkis found that our livers become studded with fat as we age because of the wrinkly nuclear membranes. “When your nuclear membrane is no longer functioning properly, it can release the DNA that’s supposed to be turned off,” she said. “So then your little liver cell becomes a little fat cell.”
The accumulation of fat inside the liver can cause serious health effects, increasing the risk of type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease, even potentially leading to death. “The liver can end up looking like Swiss cheese,” Bochkis said.
The membrane wrinkling stems from a lack of a substance called lamin, a cellular protein that comes in various forms. By putting the appropriate lamin back, we might smooth out the membrane, like Retinol helps smooth face wrinkles.
Getting it there is the challenge. But Bochkis has an idea: We could use viruses to deliver the shipment. Scientists are already modifying viruses for beneficial medical purposes, and it would be particularly easy to get a modified virus to the liver because of the organ’s role in detoxifying the body. And if it works? “You’re going to have normal cells – normal, healthy cells – and they will appropriately express the genes that should be expressed and … you’re going to eradicate the stuff that shouldn’t be there,” she said.
Bochkis suspects the wrinkling of the nuclear membrane is responsible for unwanted effects of aging in other parts of the body as well. “Every time I give this talk to colleagues, they say, ‘Well, do you think this is a universal mechanism?'” she said. “In my opinion, I think it is.”
The Latest on: Reversing aging
via Google News
The Latest on: Reversing aging
- What Science Says About the Exercise Habits That Slow Agingon August 5, 2022 at 1:17 pm
Want to make your body and brain 10 years younger? We're here to share everything science says about the exercise habits that slow aging.
- Best Place to Reverse Agingon August 3, 2022 at 6:39 am
I’m not a hippie—actually, who am I fooling, of course I am—but Bolinas always will be the place to be for me. I know where it is and how to get to it, too, which defies the highway signs and the ...
- People don’t believe I’m 42 but I’ve never had Botox – my anti-aging secret has nothing to do with skincareon July 29, 2022 at 2:03 pm
“When you work with pleasure, you reverse the signs of aging. “You increase your vitality and radiance to become lit from within. “You feel more confident and more juicy. You’ll get that glow that ...
- ‘True Cost of Aging’ Index Shows Many Seniors Can’t Afford Basic Necessitieson July 29, 2022 at 8:01 am
The Elder Index, developed by researchers at the University of Massachusetts-Boston, shows that nearly 5 million older women living alone, 2 million older men living alone, and more than 2 million ...
- Aging Veterans May Have New Options As VA And Longeveron Make Progress On Clinical Research Of Aging Frailty Treatmenton July 28, 2022 at 9:52 am
The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) partnered with Longeveron Inc. (NASDAQ: LGVN) to explore the clinical-stage biotech’s novel cell therapies as a potential treatment for aging frailty.
- Reverse Aging After 50 With These Easy Exercise Ball Moves, Trainer Sayson July 28, 2022 at 8:00 am
Here are five stability ball exercises you can do to reverse aging after 50, while improving your core strength and balance.
- Rewind your biological clock and reverse ageingon July 26, 2022 at 5:42 am
As a rule, when someone says let’s reverse ageing, the first thought that comes to mind is ageing therapies or surgeries and fillers. But these are methods that only tackle the outcome of the ageing ...
- Experiments are successfully reversing aging in rats- Humans can followon July 26, 2022 at 2:43 am
Their determination and fortitude have proved to be fruitful as they have successfully reversing aging in rats.
- Best anti-ageing creams to help reduce wrinkleson July 26, 2022 at 2:38 am
We also have dullness, dark spots, discoloration and age spots to contend with, so investing in an arsenal of hard-working creams is important to give the nourishment that we need. Dr Dev Patel, ...
via Bing News