To Slow Aging, Remove Old Cells

New research from the Mayo Clinic sheds light on the aging process and suggests that by removing old cells that can no longer divide, age-related disease can be slowed or stopped. 

What's the Latest Development?

Researchers at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota have unveiled a long-kept medical secret: What causes aging and the onset of age-related disease? After studying a group of mice, who because of a natural disease aged relatively fast, researchers concluded that our body's oldest cells—called senescent cells because they no longer divide—may cause aging and age-related disease. This is because when researchers removed the senescent cells from the mice, their aging process slowed and disease rates greatly decreased. 

What's the Big Idea?

That our bodies' oldest cells, which are more at risk for mutation, stop replicating in the first place is believed to be an important evolutionary guard against tumors and, by extension, cancer. Previous anti-aging strategies have suggested engineering cells that could continue to replicate indefinitely, with untold consequences. But the Mayo Clinic's recent research proposes an alternative which is more in line with nature. Were it possible to remove senescent cells in humans, age-related disease might become a thing of the past. 

Big Think
Sponsored by Lumina Foundation

Upvote/downvote each of the videos below!

As you vote, keep in mind that we are looking for a winner with the most engaging social venture pitch - an idea you would want to invest in.

Keep reading Show less

Why Lil Dicky made this star-studded Earth Day music video

"Earth" features about 30 of the biggest names in entertainment.

Culture & Religion
  • Lil Dicky is a rapper and comedian who released his debut album in 2015.
  • His new music video, "Earth," features artists such as Justin Bieber, Ariana Grande, Ed Sheehan, Kevin Hart, and Leonardo DiCaprio.
  • All proceeds of the music video will go to environmental causes, Dicky said.
Keep reading Show less

After death, you’re aware that you’ve died, say scientists

Some evidence attributes a certain neurological phenomenon to a near death experience.

Credit: Petr Kratochvil.
Surprising Science

Time of death is considered when a person has gone into cardiac arrest. This is the cessation of the electrical impulse that drive the heartbeat. As a result, the heart locks up. The moment the heart stops is considered time of death. But does death overtake our mind immediately afterward or does it slowly creep in?

Keep reading Show less

Behold, the face of a Neolithic dog

He was a very good boy.

Image source: Historic Environment Scotland
Surprising Science
  • A forensic artist in Scotland has made a hyper realistic model of an ancient dog.
  • It was based on the skull of a dog dug up in Orkney, Scotland, which lived and died 4,000 years ago.
  • The model gives us a glimpse of some of the first dogs humans befriended.
Keep reading Show less