(Minds) By undoing the changes in gene activity that are brought about by daily life, scientists have begun to slow, and even reverse, ageing.

The scientists tweaked genes that turn adult cells back into embryoniclike ones in mice and have resounding success extending their lives.

The changes included the reversal of mouse and human cells in vitro, extending the life of a mouse with an accelerated-aging condition and successfully promoting recovery from an injury in a middle-aged mouse.

The research is continuing at the Salk Institute for Biological Studies.

“Aging is something plastic that we can manipulate,” says Juan Carlos Izpisua Belmonte, the study’s senior author and an expert in gene expression at Salk.

In their study they rejuvenated cells by briefly turning on four genes that have the capacity to convert adult cells back into an embryoniclike state.

“I do think that epigenetic reprogramming is the ultimate way to reverse aging,” says David Sinclair, a Harvard University geneticist and anti-aging researcher who was not involved in the study but is doing similar work.

Matt Kaeberlein, a molecular biologist at the University of Washington who studies aging but was not part of the work, suggests it may be possible not just to slow aging but to actually reverse it. “That’s really exciting—that means that even in elderly people it may be possible to restore youthful function,” he says.

The molecular biology community continues to buzz and our life expectancies keep extending.  This is an exciting tim to be alive.

Reference: Scientific American

Image credit: Tim Flach Getty Images

While you’re here…
…We have a tiny favor to ask of you. Government think tanks have teamed up with Social Media Companies and Google to censor independent thought and government criticisms, and the result has been catastrophic for independent media. Despite this, The Mind Unleashed has survived without hiding our content behind a paywall, because we value open and accessible information more than we value profits. Hopefully we’re wrong, but without your help we're afraid The Mind Unleashed will algorithmically disappear from the Internet. Every contribution, big or small, will go directly into funding independent journalism. If you value what we’re doing here, you can help us keep going for as little as $1 and only a minute of your time. Thank you. Click here to support us