Category: Blog

Defatting the Streaks

The removal of damaged material from within atherosclerotic plaques (“fatty streaks”) to restore cardiovascular health is a key component of SENS, now being developed for the clinic by SRF ally Underdog Pharmaceuticals. Exciting new preclinical results from another group using this strategy have recently been published in ACS Nano.

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Which Links Must Be Broken?

Dr. Jonathan Clark’s SRF-funded group at the Babraham Institute have published two new papers showing that the current model in which aging tissues lose elasticity due to the accumulation of stable crosslinks is not the full story – results which will be crucial to reversing that deterioration.

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New 2020 Publications

2020 has already seen six new SRF-supported papers – including validation of a key tactic to prevent mitochondrial aging by our MitoSENS team, and an in-depth review coauthored by SRF, Underdog Pharmaceuticals and professor W. Gray Jerome on the major LysoSENS target 7-ketocholesterol.

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Staging Aging

A team including SRF protégé Stuart Calimport and several members of our Research Advisory Board argues in Science that the systematic classification and staging of aging-related pathology (as is currently done for cancer) should dramatically accelerate the deployment of rejuvenation therapies.

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Job Opportunity: Research Assistant (Immunology)

We are seeking a full-time Research Assistant to join the Senescence Immunology group at our Research Center in Mountain View, CA, for a project geared toward developing therapies to restore the ability of the aging immune system to clear senescent cells.

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Rejuvenation Now!

The Forever Healthy Foundation has launched a new “Rejuvenation Now” initiative, designed to identify rejuvenation therapies that are available right now and evaluate their risks and benefits. Analyses of NAD+ Restoration Therapy and Fisetin Senolytic Therapy are now available to read.

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A Green Light for the Ultimate Cure for Cancer

The elimination from the body of telomerase, the enzyme used by most cancer cells to maintain their DNA through unlimited numbers of cell divisions, is the central component of the WILT (Whole-body Interdiction of Lengthening of Telomeres) strategy proposed by SENS Research Foundation as a universal and unbreachable defence against all forms of cancer. Concerns have been raised, however, that telomerase may have other biologically important functions, making its elimination dangerous or impossible. Fortunately, recent work by Nobel laureate Carol Greider indicates a lack of any such activity.

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From AGE to SENS5: Building Momentum For Human Rejuvenation

The fifth biannual Strategies for Engineered Negligible Senescence biomedical conference is just days away. Getting ready for the trip has cast my mind back not only to previous meetings of this exciting interdisciplinary series, and also to the recent 40th meeting of the American Aging Association (AGE). AGE was the first, and remains the premier, professional scientific organization focused specifically on biomedical research in aging.

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Overtime Pay for the Municipal Waste Team

A comprehensive suite of rejuvenation biotechnologies must include the removal of extracellular aggregates from aging cells and tissues, particularly the brain. Recent work indicates that up-regulation of the activity of the native lysosomal pathway for clearance of beta-amyloid (Abeta) by the small molecule PADK can reverse existing Alzheimer-like pathology in mouse models, although caution is required in interpreting these results in the context of human disease.

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Robust, Realistic, Relevant Rejuvenation with Tau-Targeting Immunotherapy

Neurofibrillary tangles – accumulations of abnormal tau protein – are thought to play a central role in Alzheimer’s disease and other neurodegenerative conditions. Here we review a recent report in which immunotherapy was used to clear tau aggregates from a highly accurate mouse tauopathy model, resulting in functional recovery on multiple cognitive tests.

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Efficient, Mutation-Free, Large-Payload Gene Therapy of iPS

Efficient, safe methods of gene therapy will be essential enabling technologies for the repair or obviation of several of the cellular and molecular lesions driving age-related disease and dysfunction. A recent paper from the Scripps Institute demonstrates a major step in this direction with the successful use of helper-dependent adenoviral vectors to rescue cells defective in lamin A, without detectable mutational side-effects.

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Rescue of Oxidative Phosphorylation with “Allotopic” mRNA

At the third SENS conference, Dr. Samit Adhya of the Indian Institute of Chemical Biology presented a proof-of-principle for the use of an RNA import complex adapted from the parasite Leishmania to import arbitrary antisense RNA strands into mammalian mitochondria, reducing levels of a target protein by RNA interference. In a new study, Adhya’s group reports the successful use of the same technique to deliver mRNA sequences corresponding to proteins of the electron transfer chain, rescuing mitochondrial function in cells with mutations or deletions in those genes.

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Doris Taylor: Recellularized Human Hearts May be Weeks Away

Dr. Doris Taylor, the researcher whose team successfully engineered a live, beating rat heart via the technique of decellularisation and reseeding, has announced progress towards repeating the process with human tissue. Press reports based on Dr. Taylor’s presentation at the American College of Cardiology’s 60th Annual Scientific Session indicate that the hearts are growing well and are expected to begin beating within the next few weeks.

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How (Not) to Run a Lifespan Study

Much of the distraction in the literature of biogerontology, and an even higher ratio of studies cited and promoted in the popular media and the dietary supplement industry, derives from methodologically-poor lifespan studies in mice (or occasionally rats). In these studies, an increase in mean or maximal lifespan is reported, relative to short-lived controls, and claimed to be informative about the universal, degenerative aging process and the prospects for extending healthy life in humans living in the developed world.

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Harnessing Wild Horses: New Roles of Free Radicals in Cell Signaling

The free radical theory of aging suggests that reactive oxygen species (ROS) and similar chemicals are responsible for a large part, or perhaps all, of the molecular and cellular damage that accumulates in aging bodies. However, more detailed analysis has revealed that some free radicals have essential signalling functions within the cell. These functions are likely to explain some of the failure of antioxidant therapy to extend lifespans in model organisms.

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Brain Inflammation from Alzheimer's Disease

The Pathological Basis of “Normal” Cognitive Aging

Beginning in the 1960s, a loose alliance led by social gerontologists but quickly coming to include biogerontologists, geriatricians, and patient advocacy groups successfully campaigned for a new understanding: that while some level of minor cognitive decline was indeed a “normal” and inevitable part of aging, the newly-rediscovered clinicopathological entity, “Alzheimer’s disease,” was exactly that: a disease, against which the full force of public and private biomedical research should be mobilized in the pursuit of a cure.

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