Are we finally making progress in the anti-ageing depratment?
Back in 2013, researchers from the University of New South Wales (UNSW) said they’ve produced a drug that could help slow down the ageing process using a compound called nicotinamide mononucleotide (NMN).
The compound was found to reverse signs of ageing and extend the life expectancy of mice such methods have not been able to be tested in humans. However, now, that’s all about to change.
Next month,NMN, which has been proven to reverse signs of ageing in mice, including decline in eyesight, metabolism, and glucose intolerance will be tested by Keio University in japan on ten healthy human volunteers to see if the results will be as good and as safe, reports Futurism.
So how does this fountain of youth work?
NMN stimulates the production of sirtuins, a class of proteins that grow weaker as we age.
So the team is not talking about jars of cosmetic products that you slap on your face in an attempt to look younger. This drug reverses, not just external signs of ageing, but internal symptoms as well, including decline in eyesight, metabolism, and glucose intolerance.
“We’ve confirmed a remarkable effect in the experiment using mice, but it’s not clear yet how much [the compound] will affect humans,” lead researcher Shin-ichiro Imai said. “We’ll carefully conduct the study, which I hope will result in important findings originating in Japan.”
Anti-ageing products are a topic of interest in Japan, where 40% of the population will be over 65 years old by 2055.
The amazing thing about medical research is that some lead to accidental discoveries that benefit other areas including anti-ageing.
For example, last year, an experimental Alzheimer’s drug was found to have unexpected anti-ageing effects. Anti-diabetes medication Metformin has also been recently found to have anti-ageing properties (though the exact effectiveness of these treatments is still being researched).
To date, there are no proven ways to delay the human ageing process. But NMN could be the first anti-ageing drug to be allowed in the market, if proven effective and safe.
There might be a long window between research and the development of new treatments plus regulatory approval which take very long but at the very least, this adds new information to our understanding of this drug and the process of ageing.
There is hope.