A group of scientists from Babraham Institutefrom the United Kingdom, made rejuvenate 30 years of skin cell culture. Do we already have the elixir of immortality or eternal youth? No. Can you at least make people a little younger or stop them aging? Or. Then is it possible to make creams that make our skin cells look younger? With hope. But even so, what these scientists have just shown in electronic life good news.
And the fact is that in fact they managed to transfer skin cells until some parameters (not all) became the same as those of people 30 years younger. This does not mean that the cells 30 years youngerbut looks promising.
This is a procedure that is still in its infancy and still has a long way to go to find a real application outside of laboratory cultures. However, scientists are very optimistic about the results, since many diseases, such as Alzheimer’s diseaseassociated with cellular aging. If a way could be found to reverse this aging in other parts of the body, not just skin cells, perhaps they could find mechanisms to slow the progression of these diseases. After all, science is not looking for a way to make us forever young, but mechanisms that help us healthy aging.
Recycling cellular reprogramming
Pluripotent stem cells are cells that have ability to separate and distinguish in any form specialized cells or self-renew give rise to more stem cells.
They are very important cells in the study regenerative medicinefor obvious reasons, but there is a problem with getting it.
Recall that after fertilization we have a zygote, which gradually divides, giving rise to cells, initially no specialization. We don’t have liver, eye, or skin cells, but pluripotent stem cells that little by little they specialize in any type of cell.
As we grow older, we still retain some of them that allow regeneration of damaged tissues. Specifically, every tissue has a colony of stem cells that help regenerate that same tissue when needed. They are what is known as unipotent stem cellsbecause even though they are undifferentiated, they can only differentiate in one cell type. Some stem cells, known as mesenchymal cells, which can develop into various cell types, have also been found in newborn umbilical cords, fat, and adult peripheral blood.
But, as a rule, pluripotent stem cells for research are obtained from embryos and this makes your access somewhat limited. Therefore, the Japanese doctor, Shinya Yamanakadeveloped a method by which he succeeded cTransformation of adult stem cells into pluripotent stem cells. The result has been called stem cells with induced pluripotency (IPS for its abbreviation in English) and was and still is so useful in biomedicine that it earned him the Nobel Prize in Physiology in 2007.
In a way, what Yamanaka was doing was cell rejuvenation. So it was clear to the authors of this new study that in order to make skin cells look younger, they would need to use their method. The problem is that when cells become pluripotent, they can become any type of cell. This includes that they may lose their own skin cell identity.
To avoid this problem, they made a number of modifications to the Yamanaka procedure that made it possible to rejuvenate the cells, but not so much to return them to their state without differentiating. They were still already differentiated skin cells, but much younger. Specifically, if you stick to some parameters, 30 years younger.
Indicators of aging in skin cells
To test whether they succeeded in rejuvenating skin cells, they mainly analyzed two options.
One side, epigenetic clock. Epigenetics is a branch of genetics that studies changes in gene expression that do not affect the DNA sequence. That is, certain labels on DNA, which cause certain genes to be read under certain circumstances, but without changing the composition of this genetic material. In short, changes are generated, but no mutations occur. These marks also change over time, so they can be used to measure approximate age cells.
The authors of the study found that the epigenetic clock of these skin cells turned back by about 30 years. And the same regressed with the second parsed parameter: transcriptome. That is, a set of genes that were read in these cells. We know that all cells in the body have the same genes, but not all of them are read all the time. The way one or the other is read also changes with age and can be used as an indicator of aging.
Something special about skin cells that can also serve as an indicator is collagen production. It’s more in younger cells, so younger skin is smoother and wrinkle-free. They saw that they began to produce more collagen than those who were not treated, so it was clear that they had achieved rejuvenate them.
These scientists have a few steps in mind now that they rejuvenate skin cells.
On the one hand, they want to see if the procedure can be repeated with cells from other parts of the body. This, moreover, can help them in the study of specific diseases. For example, if they work with neurons, they will be able to analyze the impact on neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s disease
On the other hand, before moving on to clinical trials they need to make sure that all steps of the procedure are safe for the person.
They have a lot of work ahead of them and it is too early to talk about a cell rejuvenation method or a cure for aging. This is a very important first step, but there is still a long way to go. In any case, those who were looking for the elixir of eternal youth would be fascinated by what has been achieved. It is clear.
Source: Hiper Textual