Decades have passed and over 100 anti aging drugs have been discovered, but a recent breakthrough in the drug industry is optimistic it can make it possible for humans to live as long as 150 years with little discomfort. Is this for a fact? Does this mean we have found the elixir of life? Is the secret formula to live and look younger for years have been finally discovered? Should we start celebrating or should we still wait for the arrival of another?
Harvard University and the Anti Aging Enzyme
Harvard University has long been applauded because of the impressive discoveries and researches it has conducted. Recently, it has published a breakthrough drug technology that would prevent man from ageing with discomfort.
The Secret Revealed: SIRT1
The secret of these 100 drugs lies with the utilization of an anti aging enzyme called SIRT1. Researchers from Harvard University published in the journal Science that this enzyme helps prevent age-related diseases, as well as extend life span. However, it could only be triggered by 117 known drugs together with proper exercise, low calorie diets, and the anti-oxidant resveratrol, commonly found in red wine.
In line with this discovery, David Sinclair, a professor at Harvard Medical School, stated that aside from treating one disease, the drugs of the future would also prevent the occurrence of 20 other diseases. As a result, it will most definitely slow down the aging process and allow humans to live longer.
Some of the diseases believed to be cured by these drugs include type 2 diabetes, cancer, and Alzheimer’s disease. Furthermore, it is advised that eating grape skins, berries, drinking red wine and constant intake of drugs and supplements will naturally activate SIRT1 in our body. In effect, it would be very much possible for some of us to live as long as 150 years.
The Validity of SIRT1: A Look at the Study
In the year 2006, the team of Sinclair fed middle-aged obese mice with resveratrol and it showed that these greatly protected them from different diseases associated with aging. Moreover, these mice managed to live 15% longer than the untreated obese mice, without having no effect with their actual weight. This lead them to further investigate where they learned that natural resveratrol helped the body of mice mimic the biochemical effects of proper diet and exercise. Therefore, the team became optimistic that further investigation would revolutionize the world of medicine.
Interestingly, the study was bought by GSK for $720 Million in the year 2008 together with the expertise of Sinclair, himself. So, just imagine the price of the drug once it is completed. Would it even be available for everyone or would it simply be a drug meant for the elite?
Criticisms of the Study: Understanding Anti Aging
Major criticism concerning the use of SIRT1 in drugs is the previous use of test tube by Sinclair’s team in the measurement of the activity of the drugs. Pfizer argued against the validity of the results, but when Sinclair replaced the artificial molecules with Tryptophan amino acid and it proved that the drugs stimulated the same SIRT1, the argument came to close. Sinclair made it clear to everyone in the drug research industry that they have found one of the most effective drugs the world is yet to see that will combat the signs of aging. Nevertheless, it was the use of a mutant SIRT1, which finally became the killer experiment. It has erased all doubts about the efficacy of the drug because the moment the mutant enzyme was used, the stimulation in the mitochondria also stopped. This argued in favor with the power of SIRT1 in the body, because no other rational alternative explanation could justify the relationship of SIRT1 and resveratrol unless they accept the fact that it is indeed these two elements that triggers mitochondrial stimulation.
The Future of SIRT1 and Resveratrol
With positive remarks coming from various medical researchers, the world is eagerly awaiting the formal launch of these drugs. Professor Brian Morris, a molecular biologist at the University of Sydney was so impressed with the results of Sinclair’s especially with the manner he clarified the mechanism behind the anti aging properties of the drug. In his review of the study, he stated that there are indeed several evidences that prove the drug could protect humans from aging related diseases; nevertheless, there is more to be done before he could be convinced that it could actually extend lifespan.
In conclusion, he mentions that it is still proper diet and genetics, which will play a crucial role in healthy ageing. SIRT1 activators may indeed work and help treat people, but to say that it is wonder drug would be a very early declaration.