Friday, May 24, 2024

Genetic “clock” that slows aging.. New scientists!

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Genetic “clock” that slows aging.. New scientists!

Each of the trillions of cells undergoes molecular changes during its lifetime and may slow down before it dies.

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A team of University of California researchers has developed a way to slow down the cellular aging process using an oscillating genetic “clock”. In experiments, yeast cells were shown to live longer than cells without yeast, the “New Atlas” website reported, citing the journal “Science”.

Familiar symptoms

The familiar signs of aging begin at the cellular level, as each of the trillions of cells in the human body undergoes a series of molecular changes over its lifetime, sustaining various forms of damage until it eventually becomes unable to function. Effectively and dying, it contributes to age-related health decline, from wrinkles and gray hair to an increased risk of many diseases.

An inevitable end result

A team of University of California researchers have found that aging appears to occur through one of two specific processes, sticking to one pathway and not veering away from the other. And that cell division is almost equal, about 50/50, even between cells with the same genetic ratio in the same environment. One pathway involves a decline in the stability of DNA, while the other pathway sees a decline in mitochondria, which produce energy for cells. In either case, the end result is cell death.

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Switch between two tracks

But in the new study, a team of researchers succeeded in developing a way to slow cell aging by allowing cells to oscillate between these two different processes. Continuing to use the path analogy to explain, the cell will inevitably reach its final destination, cell death, which is faster if it follows a path straight to the end, but by running back and forth between the two paths, it takes longer, i.e. slower cell death.

A rocking toggle switch

To reach this conclusion, the team of researchers manipulated a central gene regulatory circuit that controls cell aging. Normally, a given cell is sent down a specific path, much like a switch, but in this case the researchers used the switch to act as a genetic oscillator, or oscillating genetic “clock,” that prompts the cell to switch periodically. from one pathway to another, thus slowing the rate of cell death.

Yeast cells

The researchers tested the novel process on yeast cells and found that yeast cells that came under the control of the genetic oscillator lived about 82% longer than yeast cells of a normal lifespan. The researchers say this is the most significant extension of lifespan for previous anti-aging genetic or chemical interventions, which often work by trying to return cells to a more youthful state.

Human cells

Of course, the cells of the human body are not yeast cells, so there is still a long way to go to celebrate the victory of aging and slow it down. Therefore, the team of researchers is currently investigating the possibility of applying this technology to human cells, including stem cells and neurons.

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Rolf Colon
Rolf Colon
"Creator. Award-winning problem solver. Music evangelist. Incurable introvert."

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