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Stem Cell Therapies for Animals Further Ahead

Posted: August 13, 2010 at 8:13 am

While the FDA tries to block commercial application of stem cell therapies in the US, veterinary practices continue to demonstrate that the technology is ready and potentially useful: “A Golden Retriever, plagued with arthritis, recently underwent a stem cell extraction and implant to help with mobility. … From the sounds of things, you would never suspect McIntyre was a frail and feeble dog. And these days, he’s moving around pretty well, thanks to anti-inflammatory medicines, physical therapy and a new experimental surgery involving stem cells. … like family, she wanted McIntrye to feel better and have a better quality of life. Cells were taken from his belly fat and shipped to California. Stem cells were extracted and then implanted back into his joints by a vet in Alpharetta. … He’ll never be like a puppy as far as agility but it will just give him a quality of life where he doesn’t hurt and suffer.” Meanwhile, the actions of unaccountable, unelected bureaucrats at the FDA mean that US residents must travel overseas to find the same treatment offered to humans. More importantly, what might already be a wildly successful and growing field is slowed down to a comparative crawl. When you’re forbidden to sell a product, few organization will invest in development.

View the Article Under Discussion: http://www.walb.com/Global/story.asp?S=12964756

Read More Longevity Meme Commentary: http://www.longevitymeme.org/news/

Recommendation and review posted by Fredricko

Stem Cells Versus Acute Lung Injury

Posted: August 13, 2010 at 8:13 am

Via ScienceDaily, an example of the sometimes indirect way in which stem cell transplants can cause benefits: “Acute lung injury is brought on by a number of conditions, such as pneumonia and sepsis, also known as blood poisoning. In some cases, acute lung injury develops into a more serious condition, known as acute respiratory distress syndrome, and results in insufficient oxygenation of blood and eventual organ failure. … inflammation due to injury or infection can make the border of epithelial cells become more porous than it should be. The increased permeability allows an often-deadly mix of substances, such as fluid and cells, to seep into and accumulate in the alveoli. … The team decided to re-create the unhealthy lung conditions in the lab – by culturing human alveolar cells and then chemically causing inflammation – and to observe how the presence of bone marrow stem cells would change things. … We then introduced mesenchymal stem cells without direct cell contact, and they churned out a lot of protein, called angiopoietin-1, which prevented the increase in lung epithelial permeability after the inflammatory injury … [researchers] hope clinical trials will prove the therapy is a viable one for preventing respiratory failure in critically ill patients.”

View the Article Under Discussion: http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/08/100811162352.htm

Read More Longevity Meme Commentary: http://www.longevitymeme.org/news/

Recommendation and review posted by Fredricko

Guiding the Next Generation of Researchers

Posted: August 13, 2010 at 8:13 am

We’d like to see the research community persuaded to work on the Strategies for Engineered Negligible Senescence rather than focusing on merely slowing aging via traditional drug development. So persuasion is important. Equally, the time frame is long, so another viable path is to guide the next generation of researchers in the right direction. This second approach is the purpose of the SENS Foundation’s Academic Initiative (SENSFAI) program, which has been running for a few years now. Here’s one of the young researchers to benefit from it: “Kamil Pabis is in his second year of university and has been working with the SENSFAI since 2009. He is currently studying biology at the University of Vienna. After completing his degree, Kamil plans to pursue his PhD and eventually a career in Molecular Biology or Biogerontology. … I research vascular (and in part general) calcification and their relation to aging and age-related tissue decline. The impact of calcification could be major and under-appreciated, but unfortunately we do not have definitive data. This basic research lays the ground work for future projects. A relatively thorough understanding is required to distinguish the most promising therapies for actual reversal of the pathology. Eventually I plan to help facilitate and do research under a ‘regression first’ paradigm.”

View the Article Under Discussion: http://www.sens.org/ai/blog/featured-student-2010-august

Read More Longevity Meme Commentary: http://www.longevitymeme.org/news/

Recommendation and review posted by Fredricko

Aggregates are Universal in Aging

Posted: August 13, 2010 at 8:13 am

Via EurekAlert! a reminder that we can think of most age-related conditions as resulting from one or more forms of damage that everyone suffers to some degree – but has progressed further in those who have the condition: “In many neurodegenerative diseases, such as Alzheimer’s and Huntington’s, clumps of proteins known as aggregates appear in the patients’ brains as the degeneration progresses. Those clumps contain some proteins that are unique to the specific disease (such as Abeta in Alzheimer’s), intertwined with many others that are common in healthy individuals. For years, those common proteins were thought to be accidental inclusions in the aggregates … In fact, they may not be innocent bystanders at all, but instead their presence may influence the course of neurodegenerative disease. … in the presence of proteins specific to Huntington’s disease, these aggregators actually sped up the course of the disease, indicating that they could be fundamental to its progression. These findings indicate that widespread protein insolubility and aggregation is an inherent part of aging and that it may influence both lifespan and neurodegenerative disease. The presence of insoluble protein aggregates has long been a hallmark of protein aggregation diseases such as Alzheimer’s, Huntington’s and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) disease. The team [asked] a simple question that had never been asked before: do normal proteins form insoluble clumps when normal, healthy individuals age?” Those “normal, health individuals” are on their way to the same end destination of neurodegeneration, just not as fast.

View the Article Under Discussion: http://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2010-08/plos-np080610.php

Read More Longevity Meme Commentary: http://www.longevitymeme.org/news/

Recommendation and review posted by Fredricko

More Evidence for the Costs of Visceral Fat

Posted: August 13, 2010 at 8:13 am

Don’t become fat: “Individuals with a large waist circumference appear to have a greater risk of dying from any cause over a nine-year period … Having a large waist circumference has previously been associated with inflammation, insulin resistance, type 2 diabetes, abnormal cholesterol levels and heart disease … This may be because waist circumference is strongly correlated with fat tissue in the viscera – surrounding the organs in the abdomen – which is thought to be more dangerous than fat tissue under the skin. … [researchers] examined the association between waist circumference and risk of death among 48,500 men and 56,343 women age 50 and older (median or midpoint age, 69 years in men and 67 years in women). All had participated in the Cancer Prevention Study II Nutrition Cohort, for which they completed a mailed questionnaire about demographic, medical and behavioral factors in 1992 or 1993 and provided information about weight and waist circumference in 1997. Deaths and their causes were tracked through the National Death Index until Dec. 31, 2006; a total of 9,315 men and 5,332 women died during this timeframe. … After adjusting for body mass index (BMI) and other risk factors, very large waists (120 centimeters or 47 inches or larger in men, and 110 centimeters or 42 inches or larger in women) were associated with approximately twice the risk of death during the study period. A larger waist was associated with higher risk of death across all categories of BMI, including normal weight, overweight and obese.”

View the Article Under Discussion: http://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2010-08/jaaj-lwa080510.php

Read More Longevity Meme Commentary: http://www.longevitymeme.org/news/

Recommendation and review posted by Fredricko

Personalized Life Extension Conference

Posted: August 13, 2010 at 8:13 am

A conference on general health tactics that are likely to maximize your remaining life expectancy will be held in October in San Francisco: “Advances are being made daily on what each of us can do NOW to slow the aging process to a minimum, and to delay or prevent the diseases of aging. Life extension news comes out faster than any one of us can evaluate it on our own. Let’s get together and determine how to take personal action.” Many of the folk involved in the longevity advocacy or research communities are also tinkerers who go beyond simply practicing calorie restriction and exercise, and taking a sensibly modest set of vitamins. My suspicion has always been that this is a dangerous path: there is nothing presently available to the public that is proven to do more for long-term health than calorie restriction and exercise. When you spend time tinkering and optimizing in the absence of solid data, you’re not spending time helping to bring forward the advent new medical technologies. The recent history of the pro-longevity community is rife with people who have become distracted from the future and who end up behaving no differently than the pill-sellers and potion-hawkers of the “anti-aging” marketplace. Beware this fate.

View the Article Under Discussion: http://lifeextensionconference.com

Read More Longevity Meme Commentary: http://www.longevitymeme.org/news/

Recommendation and review posted by Fredricko


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