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First gene therapy successful against human aging (with interview videos from before vs after the treatment)


ktchong

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Source: http://www.neuroscientistnews.com/research-news/first-gene-therapy-successful-against-human-aging

 

Scroll down to see the interview videos of the CEO (the test subject) before and after the therapy.

 

 

April 22, 2016

 

American woman gets biologically younger after gene therapies -

 

In September 2015, then 44 year-old CEO of BioViva USA Inc. Elizabeth Parrish received two of her own company's experimental gene therapies: one to protect against loss of muscle mass with age, another to battle stem cell depletion responsible for diverse age-related diseases and infirmities.

 

The treatment was originally intended to demonstrate the safety of the latest generation of the therapies. But if early data is accurate, it is already the world's first successful example of telomere lengthening via gene therapy in a human individual. Gene therapy has been used to lengthen telomeres before in cultured cells and in mice, but never in a human patient.

 

Telomeres are short segments of DNA which cap the ends of every chromosome, acting as 'buffers' against wear and tear. They shorten with every cell division, eventually getting too short to protect the chromosome, causing the cell to malfunction and the body to age.

 

In September 2015, telomere data taken from Parrish's white blood cells by SpectraCell's specialized clinical testing laboratory in Houston, Texas, immediately before therapies were administered, revealed that Parrish's telomeres were unusually short for her age, leaving her vulnerable to age-associated diseases earlier in life.

 

In March 2016, the same tests taken again by SpectraCell revealed that her telomeres had lengthened by approximately 20 years, from 6.71kb to 7.33kb, implying that Parrish's white blood cells (leukocytes) have become biologically younger. These findings were independently verified by the Brussels-based non-profit HEALES (Healthy Life Extension Company), and the Biogerontology Research Foundation, a UK-based charity committed to combating age-related diseases.

 

Parrish's reaction: "Current therapeutics offer only marginal benefits for people suffering from diseases of aging. Additionally, lifestyle modification has limited impact for treating these diseases. Advances in biotechnology is the best solution, and if these results are anywhere near accurate, we've made history", Parrish said.

Edited by ktchong
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Here are videos of Elizabeth Parrish, the CEO who is the test subject of the gene therapy.  She is 45.

 

In August, 2015 (before the therapy):

 

 

 

In October, 2015 (one month after the therapy):

 

Edited by ktchong
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Baby steps, but it might signal the terrible future where humans can live forever but there is no cure for baldness.

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I'd say the answer to that question is kind of like the answer to "who's the sucker in this poker game?"*

 

*If you can't tell, it's you. ;)

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Civilization, in fact, grows more and more maudlin and hysterical; especially under democracy it tends to degenerate into a mere combat of crazes; the whole aim of practical politics is to keep the populace alarmed (and hence clamorous to be led to safety) by menacing it with an endless series of hobgoblins, most of them imaginary. - H.L. Mencken

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We _do_ have a scientific discovery thread here, you know?

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"All of life’s lessons come with a price…
We may learn a lesson, and things may get better in the end…
So that’s the trade off…life experience for exhaustion… wisdom for innocence.
There may be a happy ending to our stories…
but we paid for that with little pieces of our souls and we will never get those back."

-Austin Lunn

 

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She looks the same to me. She also looks to be wearing lots of makeup.

Was she supposed to look different? I mean, I didn't imagine her skin would suddenly look 20 years younger because of additional protection of the DNA. I thought the idea was just to protect the DNA from random damage/mutations.

Put fascists and sociopaths on your ignore list.

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Never believe that anti-Semites are completely unaware of the absurdity of their replies. They know that their remarks are frivolous, open to challenge. But they are amusing themselves, for it is their adversary who is obliged to use words responsibly, since he believes in words. They even like to play with discourse for, by giving ridiculous reasons, they discredit the seriousness of their interlocutors. They delight in acting in bad faith, since they seek not to persuade by sound argument but to intimidate and disconcert. If you press them too closely, they will abruptly fall silent, loftily indicating by some phrase that the time for argument is past.

 

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She looks the same to me. She also looks to be wearing lots of makeup.

Was she supposed to look different? I mean, I didn't imagine her skin would suddenly look 20 years younger because of additional protection of the DNA. I thought the idea was just to protect the DNA from random damage/mutations.

 

 

I don't think so. I was just responding to someone who seemed to think she did.

 

Many humans cells last a lot longer than 6 months. I personally forget how long your average skin cell lasts (anyone know?), but I'm pretty sure it's at least 3 months.

 

The woman already looked pretty good (with makeup at least) for 45 years old before the treatment. However the whole make up thing can really throw the appearance of age off bigtime, especially on camera. It never ceases to astound me how so many men fall for make up, many to the point of not even realizing it's there. But they do fall for it, so I can see why many women use it.

 

If the telomere theory is even right (I think the whole theory part in regards to this (and many other things) is lost on many), and one can 'freeze' them at a given length, a question then is: will one actually get younger or will one just stay the same biological age? I would think the latter, but one never knows for sure until it's tried. And again, there very well may be a lot more to aging than telomeres.

Edited by Valsuelm
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She looks the same to me. She also looks to be wearing lots of makeup.

Was she supposed to look different? I mean, I didn't imagine her skin would suddenly look 20 years younger because of additional protection of the DNA. I thought the idea was just to protect the DNA from random damage/mutations.

 

 

I don't think so. I was just responding to someone who seemed to think she did.

 

Many humans cells last a lot longer than 6 months. I personally forget how long your average skin cell lasts (anyone know?), but I'm pretty sure it's at least 3 months.

 

 

Skin cells last about 1 month with the replacement time doubling to 2 months at age 60. 

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As a point of interest, the only cells known to not lose telomeres over time are cancer cells. I'll be more interested to see where she is at 6 months later, and in particular, 7 years later.

Stem cells.

 

It's not as simple as "repairing telomeres = cancer". Read up on telomerase reverse transcriptase, apoptosis and cancer cells. The issue is really complex (as all cutting-edge science should be), and I'd probably make some fairly embarassing blunders trying to explain it.

 

As a side note, this woman was trying to reverse a condition that involved abnormally short telomeres for her age (according to her own proprietary diagnostic tech). Short telomeres are linked to immune system problems. It's not the same as using gene therapy to secure eternal life, so her looking younger would be even more of a ridiculous PR stunt than the whole thing already is.

 

paging Zoraptor...

- When he is best, he is a little worse than a man, and when he is worst, he is little better than a beast.

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As a point of interest, the only cells known to not lose telomeres over time are cancer cells. I'll be more interested to see where she is at 6 months later, and in particular, 7 years later.

Stem cells.

 

It's not as simple as "repairing telomeres = cancer". Read up on telomerase reverse transcriptase, apoptosis and cancer cells. The issue is really complex (as all cutting-edge science should be), and I'd probably make some fairly embarassing blunders trying to explain it.

 

As a side note, this woman was trying to reverse a condition that involved abnormally short telomeres for her age (according to her own proprietary diagnostic tech). Short telomeres are linked to immune system problems. It's not the same as using gene therapy to secure eternal life, so her looking younger would be even more of a ridiculous PR stunt than the whole thing already is.

 

paging Zoraptor...

 

My undergraduate was in biochemistry & molecular biology. I never claimed that "repairing telomeres = cancer". Reread my statement. It's been a theory for quite some time that telomeres are linked with aging, but I never felt the link was more than anectodal. I feel the endocrine system is where to look for aging answers.

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My undergraduate was in biochemistry & molecular biology. I never claimed that "repairing telomeres = cancer". Reread my statement. It's been a theory for quite some time that telomeres are linked with aging, but I never felt the link was more than anectodal. I feel the endocrine system is where to look for aging answers.

 

Fair enough. The telomere lengthening in cancer cells is commonly brought up in this context, but from what I understand, it's more a with this ergo because of this argument than an actual proven causal relationship. It's not telomeric lengthening that turns healthy adult stem cells into cancer cells, but rather telomerase is upregulated in cancer cells... for various reasons. If you have an actual background in biochemistry, you are in a better position than me to explain those reasons (and I'd thank you if you did). However, telomerase upregulation does indeed appear to be necessary to sustain the growth of cancers.

 

If you weren't suggesting a causal relationship... why bring it up, though?

Edited by 213374U

- When he is best, he is a little worse than a man, and when he is worst, he is little better than a beast.

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As a point of interest, the only cells known to not lose telomeres over time are cancer cells. I'll be more interested to see where she is at 6 months later, and in particular, 7 years later.

Stem cells.

 

It's not as simple as "repairing telomeres = cancer". Read up on telomerase reverse transcriptase, apoptosis and cancer cells. The issue is really complex (as all cutting-edge science should be), and I'd probably make some fairly embarassing blunders trying to explain it.

 

As a side note, this woman was trying to reverse a condition that involved abnormally short telomeres for her age (according to her own proprietary diagnostic tech). Short telomeres are linked to immune system problems. It's not the same as using gene therapy to secure eternal life, so her looking younger would be even more of a ridiculous PR stunt than the whole thing already is.

 

paging Zoraptor...

 

My undergraduate was in biochemistry & molecular biology.swers.

 

There is something thats not common...someone who actually has studied what we debate about  :biggrin:

 

Do you know anything about cloning? I want to ask you something

"Abashed the devil stood and felt how awful goodness is and saw Virtue in her shape how lovely: and pined his loss”

John Milton 

"We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing.” -  George Bernard Shaw

"What counts in life is not the mere fact that we have lived. It is what difference we have made to the lives of others that will determine the significance of the life we lead" - Nelson Mandela

 

 

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@213374U I wouldn't sell yourself short. What they teach in the classroom at the undergraduate level is about cancer is at par with serious reading of materials you can find online these days. I honestly didn't spend a whole lot of time on cancer. My biochemistry undergraduate curriculum focused a lot more on analytical chemistry. IE: "Here is a chuck of organic material. Tell me what it's made of." I did my senior thesis on Alzheimer's disease, of which pursuing a treatment/cure for was my passion.

 

That aside, if improper telomerase uptake in cancer is a problem, it wouldn't surprise me. One of the prevailing theories on cancer are there there is a dysfunction of the G2 phase of mitosis. Ordinarily, there is a negative feedback loop during this phase which prevents completion of cell synthesis. In cancer cells, it has been observed that certain enzymes which are responsible for catalyzing phosphate groups (highly important in DNA interaction) are out of "balance". Normally a cell will "suicide" (apoptosis), but in cancer cells this does not occur. Which quantities of what kinase are desirable is unknown, not understood, and appears to vary across different cells. That's one reason why cancer treatments are not universal.

 

Personally, I feel that telomeres not falling off during cell division is more a symptom of cancer than anything else. To replicate, DNA requires an RNA primer which leads actual replication. Without disposable telomeres, you DNA would be damaged right at the end immediately before it was replicated--causing it to not fully synthesize. If telomeres are not falling of in cancer cells, it suggest that the kinase involved in the priming are not in order, and that the ultimate check sum of the DNA is failing.

 

@Bruce, cloning is a common senior project for many undergraduate students. It's not terribly difficult to technically achieve, but is still poorly understood. It is not my area of expertise. Ask if you wish anyhow.

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