Friday, 20 December 2013

New mechanism of aging was discovered

New discovery of scientists from Harvard Medical school offers a promising approach to combat aging in muscles.  Dr. Comes and colleagues revealed the mechanisms of mitochondrial aging:  

"Ever since eukaryotes subsumed the bacterial ancestor of mitochondria, the nuclear and mitochondrial genomes have had to closely coordinate their activities, as each encode different subunits of the oxidative phosphorylation (OXPHOS) system. Mitochondrial dysfunction is a hallmark of aging, but its causes are debated. We show that, during aging, there is a specific loss of mitochondrial, but not nuclear, encoded OXPHOS subunits. We trace the cause to an alternate PGC-1α/β-independent pathway of nuclear-mitochondrial communication that is induced by a decline in nuclear NAD+ and the accumulation of HIF-1α under normoxic conditions, with parallels to Warburg reprogramming. Deleting SIRT1 accelerates this process, whereas raising NAD+ levels in old mice restores mitochondrial function to that of a young mouse in a SIRT1-dependent manner. Thus, a pseudohypoxic state that disrupts PGC-1α/β-independent nuclear-mitochondrial communication contributes to the decline in mitochondrial function with age, a process that is apparently reversible."

The scientist also conducted an experiment on rats during which they supplied the animals with NAD. The results were absolutely amazing: one week treatment lead to reverse of biological age of the rats' muscles from 24 months to 6 months. It is the same if muscles of 60 years old men become as young as muscles of 20 years old person!!!

Just amazing! I am waiting for clinical studies of this approach!

Source: CELL


The process of aging leads to not only cardio-vascular problems, which are the main causes of dearth, but also to osteoporosis and other bone diseases, which can cause disability.

Now even if you have bone degeneration, doctors will be able to repair the bones by wonderful new device called BioPen. The BioPen, developed by researchers from the UOW-headquartered Australian Research Council Centre of Excellence for Electromaterials Science (ACES), will give surgeons greater control over where the materials are deposited while also reducing the time the patient is in surgery by delivering live cells and growth factors directly to the site of injury, accelerating the regeneration of functional bone and cartilage.
The BioPen works similar to 3D printing methods by delivering cell material inside a biopolymer such as alginate, a seaweed extract, protected by a second, outer layer of gel material. The two layers of gel are combined in the pen head as it is extruded onto the bone surface and the surgeon ‘draws’ with the ink to fill in the damaged bone section.
Once the cells are ‘drawn’ onto the surgery site they will multiply, become differentiated into nerve cells, muscle cells or bone cells and will eventually turn from individual cells into a thriving community of cells in the form of a functioning a tissue, such as nerves, or a muscle.


My sincere congratulations to my colleague and exPI, Alex Zhavoronkovwith getting a professorship from my alma mater MIPT.

Alex is an excellent scientists and mentor. He is doing the great work to popularize science and to help young talented students to develop their skills and find a good place in the science. Congratulations once again and good luck in the future work!