Want to live forever? Join the club!
Join the growing number of people who are committed to living forever. Now that healthcare has merged with IT the exponential growth in medical technology means immortality may be closer than you think. From drug research and diagnostics to exoskeletons and nanobots – rapid advances are increasing our life expectancy every day.
Radical life extension is a growing industry – and more and more people are putting (a lot!) of money where their mouths are:
- 5 billionaires who want to live forever – Fortune Magazine
- Understanding Calico: Larry Page, Google Ventures, and the quest for immortality – The Verge
- Oracle founder Larry Ellison has proclaimed his wish to live forever and donated more than $430 million to anti-aging research. – Washington Post
Over half of UK adults don’t know their blood pressure – Cambridge News – 11-Jan-2018
Nearly a quarter of over 35s have never had their blood pressure checked.
Blood pressure is one of the three pillars of heart health.
Cholesterol and blood flow are the other 2 pillars.
Cambridge medical researchers are calling for more education.
Lifestyle, environmental and hormonal factors can impact blood flow.
Prevention is much easier than fixing a cardiovascular health problem.
How to grow functioning human muscles from stem cells – Kurzweil AI – 10-Jan-2018
Duke University has grown the first functioning human skeletal muscle from iPSCs.
Human induced pluripotent stem cells can generate any type of cell in the body.
When grown with a molecule called Pax7 it signals them to start becoming muscle.
Resulting muscle fibers contract and react to external stimuli.
Implanted fibers progressively integrated into native tissue by growing blood vessels.
New technique could be used for cellular therapies, drug discovery, and studying rare diseases.
One cigarette almost always leads to a regular habit – The Guardian – 10-Jan-2018
69% of people who try a cigarette end up smoking daily for some period of time.
Providing fewer reasons for young people to try a cigarette is a good idea.
Every year around 200,000 UK children try cigarettes for the first time.
Data pooled from eight surveys this century including the UK and USA.
How close are we to a Black Mirror-style digital afterlife? – The Guardian – 9-Jan-2018
Eugenia Kuyda memorialised her dead boyfriend as a chatbot.
She asked his friends and family to share his old text messages and fed them into a neural network built by developers at her artificial intelligence startup, Replika.
Kuyda discovered that talking to the chatbot allowed her to be more open and honest.
Even with the best in today’s artificial intelligence and robotics techniques, we lack the technical capabilities to make a sophisticated robot.
MCP-1 A Potential Aging Biomarker – LEAF Science – 8-Jan-2018
Reliable and fast ways to assess biological age are needed to determine the outcome of potential interventions.
Lifespan studies are most reliable but this is costly and time-consuming.
Monocyte chemoattractant protein MCP-1/CCL2 is an important chemokine.
It recruits monocytes, memory T cells, and dendritic cells to the sites of inflammation.
Circulating MCP-1 increased in an age-dependent manner in wild-type mice.
In humans with aortic stenosis, MCP-1 levels were significantly higher in frail individuals.
Middle-aged can reverse heart risk with exercise – BBC News – 8-Jan-2018
Study analysed hearts of people aged 45-64 with no history of exercising regularly.
Progressive aerobic exercise over the two years saw improvement in heart health.
Maximum oxygen intake improved, as did plasticity in the left ventricular muscle.
Result was a reversal of decades of a sedentary lifestyle on the heart.
Benefits not seen in people taking yoga and weight training.
Heart appears to retain ability to remodel itself up to the age of 65.
Molecule could revert cellular ageing- iMM LIsboa – 8-Jan-2018
Non-coding RNA is never translated into protein.
Cells derived from the skin of old mice produced higher amounts of Zeb2-NAT.
Reducing the amount Zeb2-NAT regenerated old cells.
Research performed at Instituto de Medicina Molecular (iMM) João Lobo Antunes.
Society for Regenerative Medicine Manufacturing Formed – Digital Journal – 8-Jan-2018
Inaugural meeting will take place during the World Stem Cell Summit.
Will promote the scale-up of regenerative medicine manufacturing technologies and processes.
Goals include scaling up tools, developing standards and integrating technologies.
Multi-gene test predicts early heart disease risk – American Heart Association – 8-Jan-2018
Patients with familial hypercholesterolemia are at increased risk for early-onset heart disease.
Not all patients have this single genetic defect which can be measured by current tests.
Could increase five-fold the number of cases for which a genetic explanation can be found.
Genetic risk was independent of other known risk factors.
What is ‘Aussie’ flu and should we be worried? – BBC News – 8-Jan-2018
Aussie flu or H3N2 is an influenza A virus that appears to cause more severe infections in young children and the elderly.
Flu symptoms come on very quickly and can include: fever (temperature above 38C), aches, exhaustion, dry cough, sore throat, tummy pain or diarrhoea etc.
Most people will recover in about a week and won’t need any specific treatment, apart from a bit of bed rest, some paracetamol or ibuprofen and drinking plenty of fluids.
But it could be deadly for the very old, very young or people with pre-existing health conditions such as heart disease.
US life expectancy falls for second consecutive year – Independent – 7-Jan-2018
A new study released by the US National Centre for Health Statistics (NCHS) found an American baby born in 2016 can expect to live 78.6 years.
Estimated lifespan of American children drops for second consecutive year for the first time since 1963.
Experts have expressed concerns over the sharp rise in the number of drug-related deaths.
The study also revealed heart disease and cancer remain by far the biggest killers in the US.
Cell biology hacked to create complex shapes that form living tissue – Kurzweil AI – 5-Jan-2018
3D cell-patterning shapes active mouse and human embryonic cells into thin layers of extracellular matrix fibers.
Shapes can be used to create bowls, coils, and ripples out of living tissue.
UCSF lab approach uses DNA-programmed assembly of cells (DPAC),
It provides an initial template (pattern) for tissue to later develop.
Could significantly improve the structure, maturation, and vascularization” of tissues in organoids.
Predicting mirror image of drug compounds can save money – BBC News – 5-Jan-2018
Researchers developed an algorithm to test whether drugs are likely to undergo racemisation.
Racemisation creates mirror images of the chemical compounds.
One of these enantiomers may prevent certain drugs from binding in people’s bodies.
Instead of having the desired effect, drugs can become less potent or have an adverse effect.
Prediction can identify problem molecules early in development to save money.
Low-Hum Therapy Seems To Counteract Alzheimer’s Symptoms In Mice – IFL Science – 4-Jan-2018
MIT researchers have exposed mice to a hum at 40 Hertz.
Mice developed half as many amyloid beta plaques in their hippocampus.
Sound therapy for just an hour a day induced high-speed brainwaves that were able to break down the proteins.
More effective in reaching the hippocampus than visual stimulus.
Can also be combined with physical vibrations.
Animal models were genetically engineered to develop an ailment similar to Alzheimer’s but result might not translate to humans.
Raw water health craze is a bad idea – Washington Post – 4-Jan-2018
Raw water advocates worry that filtration is removing necessary minerals.
But it also removes dangerous bacteria, viruses and parasites that can make you sick.
You can get the minerals you need from a healthy diet.
Molecules in water from a spring or from the tap are identical
The lack of clean water kills hundreds of thousands of children a year.
Total-body PET/CT scanner could revolutionize analysis of disease – Eurek Alert – 3-Jan-2018
Scientists at UC Davis outline the development and benefits of this innovative diagnostic tool.
Allows imaging of all the tissues and organs of the body simultaneously.
Will be able to detect focal pathologies at considerably lower levels of disease activity than is currently possible.
Scan times could be less than one minute.
Positron emission tomography (PET) is the most sensitive technique for non-invasively studying the living human being.
Brain tumours effectively treated by injecting patients with viruses – Independent – 3-Jan-2018
Treatment works by stimulating the internal defences of patients to fight their tumours.
The presence of cancer in the brain dampens the body’s own immune system.
In all nine patients in the trial there was evidence the virus had stimulated an immune response.
Viruses can pass through the blood-brain barrier and were administered via a drip.
Alcohol can cause irreversible genetic damage to stem cells – The Guardian – 3-Jan-2018
Research using mice shows alcohol causes cancer by scrambling the DNA in cells.
Alcohol metabolite causes DNA damage including to stem cells.
Acetaldehyde slices through DNA causing permanent damage if not neutralised by two natural defence mechanisms.
Alcohol consumption causes around 4% of cancers in the UK.
Woman receives bionic hand with sense of touch – BBC News – 3-Jan-2018
First bionic hand with a sense of touch that can be worn outside a laboratory.
Fitted to patient who lost her left hand in an accident 25 years ago.
Technology is now small enough to fit in a rucksack.
Sensors can detect information about whether an object is soft or hard.
Information is relayed to the brain via tiny electrodes implanted in nerves in the upper arm.
The feeling is spontaneous as if it were your real hand.
Physicists take first step toward cell-sized robots – Cornel Chronicle – 2-Jan-2018
Robot exoskeleton can rapidly change shape upon sensing chemical or thermal changes.
The machines move using a motor called a bimorph made from graphene and glass.
Team produced the thinnest bimorph ever made.
Devices are compatible with semiconductor manufacturing.
Puts the computational power of the spaceship Voyager onto an object the size of a cell.
Work outlined in “Graphene-based Bimorphs for Micron-sized, Autonomous Origami Machines.
AI early diagnosis could save heart patients – BBC News – 2-Jan-2018
Cardiologists analyse heartbeat scans incorrectly in one in five cases.
False negatives send patients home with risk of a heart attack.
False positives result in unnecessary and expensive operations.
Artificial intelligence system developed at the John Radcliffe Hospital is more accurate.
It can pick up details in the scans that doctors can’t see.
Technology will start to be available to NHS hospitals for free this summer.
Could save the NHS more than £300m a year.
The system is also being commercialised by a start-up company called Optellium.
New DNA vaccine could lead to a universal vaccine for the flu – Digital Trends – 2-Jan-2018
Flu virus continually shape-shifts from year to year.
Current flu vaccine is an inactivated virus based on a prediction of what next year’s flu virus is going to look like.
DNA vaccines inject a genetic code for proteins from the virus into our own cells.
Our cells then produce the viral proteins, antigens, that make the immune response.
Successfully tested in monkeys in a situation similar to the 2009 influenza pandemic.
First universal vaccine will come to market in 5 to 10 years.
Woman with artificial heart carries pump in backpack – Metro – 31-Dec-2017
Selwa Hussain is a second-ever person in Britain to be given an artificial heart.
She was too ill for a heart transplant and her husband Al agreed she be given an artificial organ.
Surgeons replaced her deseased heart with an artificial implant
A battery-powered pump and electric motor inside the 15lb bag pushes air through tubes to feed plastic chambers in Selwa’s chest.
This pushes blood around her body.
BrainExcell Announce New Natural Nootropic Stack – Daily Telescope – 31-Dec-2017
As a result of Ryan Maguires’ two year work he created natural cognitive enhancers FOCUS and SLEEP, two stacks that aim to boost neurotransmitter production and signalling, helping to improve your brain’s overall performance.
Natural nootropic stacks, free from ingredients that might cause unwanted side-effects.
Using these products together will help you transition seamlessly from intense productivity to profound recovery.
Startup that wants to make a digital copy of every person in the world – BGR – 30-Dec-2017
Oben’s technology provides everyone with a 3D avatar that looks and sounds like them.
All ObEN needs to do that is a selfie of you and a voice recording.
An AI-driven virtual copy can be used in day-to-day applications.
Starting with AI Stars that delivers new products and services that merge technology and celebrity intellectual property.
Avatars, in a sense, also enable the person they’re copying to live forever.
Engineers Hack Cell Biology to Create 3-D Shapes from Living Tissue – UCSF – 28-Dec-2017
Many of the complex folded shapes of mammalian body plans can be recreated with simple instructions.
Mesenchymal cells play a special role in folding some tissues during development.
Tug on the network of ropelike extracellular matrix (ECM) fibers.
Create forces within the tissue that can cause it to bend and fold into a variety of shape.
Should improve biologists’ ability to create tissue organoids.
Scientists Are Designing Artisanal Proteins for Your Body – NY Times – 26-Dec-2017
Our bodies make roughly 20,000 different kinds of proteins.
A protein’s particular shape enables it to do a particular job.
Can now choose the building blocks required to create a particular shape.
Often those proteins are profoundly different from any found in nature.
Protein designed to block flu infection works in mice.
Will artificial intelligence become conscious? – Kurzweil AI – 22-Dec-2017
Forget about today’s modest incremental advances in artificial intelligence.
Machines could soon be aware of themselves and their surroundings.
An advanced set of machines could replace humans at literally all jobs.
Conscious machines will raise troubling legal and ethical problems.
Researchers are divided on whether these sorts of hyperaware machines will ever exist.
Mitochondrial Contribution to Aging and Age-Related Disease – Fight Aging – 21-Dec-2017
Mitochondria are primarily responsible for generating chemical energy stores.
Small number of genes remain to form the circular mitochondrial DNA.
Mitochondrial DNA can become damaged and impair the energy generation machinery.
Cellular quality control that destroy problematic mitochondria start to fail.
Robots Run Experiments While Scientists Sleep – Forbes – 21-Dec-2017
Transcriptic robotic cloud laboratory allows users to run synthetic biology experiments remotely.
Software helps scientists plan experiments and execute them flawlessly.
Can lead to faster, more reproducible research.
70% of scientists said they couldn’t replicate another scientist’s experiment.
US life expectancy down for a second year – USA Today – 21-Dec-2017
Health researcher claim that Americans are dying younger, and life expectancy is now down for the second straight year — something not seen in more than half a century.
Fewer people make it to age 65. And the biggest killers of young people include what statisticians call “unintentional injuries” — a category that covers drug overdoses, traffic crashes and falls.
Deaths from those causes rose 9.7% in 2016.
Suicides also increased in 2016, as did reported deaths from Alzheimer’s disease