We all reach the age where we wish we could turn back the hands of time to our younger days. However, no wrinkle cream, facial treatment, or botox surgery can work miracles and make you young again. Some treatments may be able to shave a few years off your appearance, but until now, no drug or product has existed that allows people to actually regain their youth and reverse the effects of ageing.
In lieu of actual time travel, researchers at the Cedars-Sinai Heart Institute may have found the solution the the unfortunate side effects of aging. By injecting stem cells from the hearts of younger mice into older mice, the scientists found that the older mice experienced a youthful vitality, becoming more active and growing hair more quickly.
Prior to the experiment, the applications of Cardiosphere-derived cells (CDC) garnered positive results, but never before was a link known to exist between these cells and the process of ageing. In the study, scientists found a clear connection when they injected one group of mice with a concentration of CDC cells from newborn mice and another placebo group with saline. Both groups were put through a series of tests a month after the injection, including blood, echocardiographic, haemodynamic, and treadmill stress tests. The CDC group experienced improved heart rates, faster hair growth, exercise times that were 20 percent longer, and longer heart cell telomeres than their saline-injected counterparts.
It’s important to realize that there is still a long way to go before these studies can be tested on humans and become an approved remedy for aging. Co-lead researcher of the study, Lilian Grigorian-Shamagian, MD and PHD, explains that these findings do not establish whether the stem cells actually extend the lifespan of the mice or simply provide an older body with a new heart. It is also unclear if the CDC cells need to be taken from younger hearts to be effective.
In any case, the findings from this study are promising, beyond mere cosmetic purposes for those looking for a way to shave off a few years on their appearance. Researchers are hopeful that the cells could be used for medical purposes to treat heart failure and muscular dystrophy, and reduce the number of deaths due to heart disease every year, which averages 610,000.