Innovation

Can This New Pill End Aging As We Know It?

The idea of extending life past its natural expiry date or even putting a “stop” to aging altogether is one that fascinates many, morbid as though it may seem. And if you need proof, then look no further than the crypto-rich community, most of which donate large amounts of their wealth to science foundations and facilities that specialize in cryogenics and technologies that would one day, leave aging at the door and never let it in.

But for those who set their sights lower, what if instead of avoiding death, you can just simply take a pill to stave off the nasty effects of aging? What if instead of extending your life, you can just say goodbye to osteoporosis, memory loss, cancers and the general fragility of being old?

According to senolytics, it might happen sooner than you think. In fact, this emerging area of anti-aging medicine has already shown promising results in animals, and is just about to start human clinical trials.

The idea around it, per gerontologists, is extending our “healthspan” as opposed to our “lifespan.” That is, helping people age without all the usual pain and illness, meaning that older people could still be as youthful and strong as those younger than them.

“Healthy ageing is a huge project – it can come with a lot of benefits, both for governments and older patients themselves,” Ming Xu, an assistant professor at the University of Connecticut’s Centre on Ageing, said. As per Xu, the current goal is to find a way to safely slow down the aging process of humans, while also preventing disease.

Back in 2016, Xu’s team was able to use a genetic trick that made one mouse look younger than its sibling, despite both being born at the same time. Replicating this process in humans however, is still tricky at best. The genetic trick used in the mice is also unsafe for humans, and so developing one for people is still in the works.

Nevertheless, with positive results and clinical trials on the way, the research looks promising, and only time will tell if we can, well, stop time.

Old Man The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that osteoarthritis affects more than 30 million adults in the U.S. Pixabay

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