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Rejuvenating blood stem cells can help older adults live younger and healthier
Young blood has a rejuvenating effect in older bodies: hearts beat stronger, muscles become stronger, and thinking becomes sharper.
“A 70-year-old with a 40-year-old blood system could have a longer healthspan, if not a longer lifespan,” - Emmanuelle Passegué, corresponding author.
Aging niche is deteriorating and overwhelmed with inflammation, leading to dysfunction in the blood stem cells.
Over time, blood stem cells produce fewer RBCs and immune cells, and have trouble maintaining genome integrity (may lead to blood cancers).
One inflammatory signal released from the damaged bone marrow niche, IL-1B, was critical in driving these aging features.
Blocking IL-1B with the drug, anakinra, returned the blood stem cells to a younger, healthier state.
Even more youthful effects occurred when IL-1B was prevented from exerting its inflammatory effects throughout the animal’s life.
Researchers are now trying to learn the processes in humans and if rejuvenating the stem cell niche in middle age would be a more effective strategy.
Study by Columbia University Irving Medical Center, published in Nature Cell Biology.
Arthritis drug named anakinra found to reverse ageing effects in blood in mice
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