How This Broccoli Enzyme Can Slow Aging

Researchers have worked so hard to find an enzyme that can slow down some of the chronic conditions that come with age. Up to now the tests were done on mice, but they feel confident enough to try them on people as well. It is interesting that this enzyme is found in natural foods such as broccoli and cucumbers.

This ongoing quest for the Fountain of Youth has included an international team of researchers that may have discovered a compound that make cells act younger than they really are, but tested only on mice.

Researchers led by the Washington University School of Medicine published in Cell Metabolisma paper stating that they found an agent that can balance out what happens in aging cells so that they can behave as they would in a younger mouse. That compound is also found in many organic foods like cucumbers, broccoli, cabbage and edamame.

The compound is callednicotinamide mononucleotide (NMN), and it is incorporated in producing another compound that is crucial for energy metabolism. So, when a normal aging mouse gets infusions of NMN, where researches produced more of that energy-fueling compound, certain biological problems related to aging were gone. The subjected NMN animals did not gain as much weight, but converted food into energy more efficiently, and their blood sugar and eyesight were improved. The mice receiving NMN could prevent certain genetic changes related to aging.

Because most of the lab mice live only for several years, the researchers started the NMN treatments at five months, and lasted for a year. The study could not conclude that mice live longer only that there are lower rates of age-related diseases.

However, even if you eat as much as possible broccoli or cabbage you cannot achieve the sufficient amount from natural foods to extend your life says Dr. Shin-Ichiro Imai, professor of developmental biology and medicine at Washington University and senior author of the paper.

Keio University in Tokyo is launching an early study on people by using pill form of NMN. Here is what Imai says, quoting: “It’s clear that in humans and in rodents, we lose energy with age.” Furthermore, “We are losing the enzyme NMN. But if we can bypass that process by adding NMN, we can make energy again. These results provide a very important foundation for the human studies.”

These findings are correlated along with other anti-aging compounds tested on animals like the diabetes drug metformin, rapamycin and sirtuins; and all of them are as well as involved in energy-making process. Imai says, quoting: “All of these pathways cross-talk with each other.” Furthermore, “We don’t know the precise details of how, but they are communicating with each other.”

The general hope is that studies performed on humans will give more information about how to keep cellsyoung, moreover to stop or hold off the diseases that typically occur as the cells get older and lose their function.

 

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