Rejuvenation Roundup March 2020


Rejuvenation Roundup MarchRejuvenation Roundup March

Today might be April Fool’s Day, but COVID-19 is no joke, aging isn’t either, and the combination of the two definitely isn’t – and the people attempting to reverse the hallmarks of aging in order to give us longer, healthier lives aren’t messing around. Here’s what’s happened in the world of rejuvenation in March.


Team and activities

Note for our MitoMouse Backers: All of the swag items have been ordered; however, we will not be able to physically ship anything until we are allowed into the building. As of now, the shelter-in-place situation will last until April 7, but it could very well extend for an undefined amount of time. Due to the pandemic, shipping has been halted until the California shelter-in-place order is rescinded, as health is our first priority.


Is Aging a Disease?: Whether or not aging should be considered a disease has always been a common discussion among rejuvenation activists, and Nicola discusses this idea along with its current categorization as a syndrome.

Telomere Attrition: Continuing X10’s series on the Hallmarks of Aging, Giuliano explains telomere attrition and the role of telomeres in cellular division.

Rejuvenation Roundup Podcast

Ryan O’Shea of Future Grind hosts this month’s podcast, showcasing the events and research discussed here.

Research Roundup

Towards a Possible Solution to Diabetes: Washington University researchers discovered a method of restoring beta cells to the pancreas; this method may prove effective in the treatment of diabetes.

Our Immune Cells Damage Our Brains During Aging: Chronic, systemic inflammation (inflammaging) can cause our own immune systems to attack our brains, resulting in damage to fundamental cognitive abilities.

Success in Reprogramming a Supercentenarian’s Cells: At AgeX Therapeutics, researchers used a technique to reprogram cells from a 114-year-old woman, causing them to act like young cells again.

Visceral Fat Causes Immune Mediated Cognitive Harm: Researchers from the Medical College of Georgia have discovered that visceral fat causes the cytokine interleukin-1 to infiltrate the brain, leading to inflammation and brain damage.

Mitochondrial Therapy Improves Aspects of Aging in Older Mice: Taking mitochondria from older mice and placing them into younger mice has been shown to reverse multiple aspects of age-related degeneration.

Stem Cell Therapy Effective in 7 COVID-19 Cases: A stem cell therapy aimed at blunting the deadly cytokine storm immune reaction has seen success in seven patients.

Primitive Stem Cells Regenerate Blood Vessels in the Eye: Johns Hopkins researchers have used stem cells to regenerate ocular blood vessel damage caused by diabetes.

Decline of Mitophagy Appears to Accelerate Heart Aging: Mitophagy occurs when cells destroy their own malfunctioning mitochondria; the decine of this process has been shown to lead to cardiac aging.

Senescence Marker Levels Differ Between Tissues: Cells between different tissues become senescent at different times and in different amounts; a study has shown that their marker levels are different as well.

Transplanting Gut Bacteria from Long-Lived People to Mice: Mice and humans share many of the same gut bacteria, and this research suggests that it has similar effects on longevity.

A Double-Edged Sword: Reviewing Cancer and Senescence: Senescence is the body’s defenses against cancer, but this review explains how senescent cells can lead to cancer.

Reversing Cellular Aging Takes Another Step Forward: By rewinding an epigenetic clock, Stanford University researchers have discovered that they can reverse many aspects of cellular aging.

Mitochondrial Transplants Supercharge Heart Cells: Researchers at UC Irvine have discovered that they can give heart cells a temporary boost of energy by transplanting healthy mitochondria into them.

Aging and a High-Fat Diet Change the Gut Microbiome: Excessive fat in the diet is not good for your gut flora – and neither is aging.

Overcoming a Major Hurdle for CRISPR-Cas9 Gene Editing: Previously, CRISPR could only target sites with specific pre-existing markers; a new approach removes this restriction.

AgeGuess, a Methylomic Prediction Model for Human Ages: Using an algorithm to determine the relationship between epigenetic changes and aging, a team of researchers has built upon previous work to develop a more accurate epigenetic clock.

The senotherapeutic drug ABT-737 disrupts aberrant p21 expression to restore liver regeneration in adult mice: Liver is one of the best regenerative tissues in the body, but excessive p21 expression harms this process – and is linked to cellular senescence. This drug has been shown to interfere with excessive p21 expression.

Reduced caloric intake and periodic fasting independently contribute to metabolic effects of caloric restriction: In this study, the researchers conclude that some, but not all, of the metabolic benefits of caloric restriction are achieved through periodic fasting.

DNA methylation clocks as a predictor for aging and age estimation in naked mole rats: Naked mole rats are among the longest-lived mammals and a frequent target of aging research efforts. They now have an epigenetic clock in order to support further studies on mammalian aging.

Probiotics modulate the microbiota–gut–brain axis and improve memory deficits in aged SAMP8 mice: The gut and brain are connected through the gut-brain axis, and our gut bacteria have been shown to have significant effects on the functioning of our brains. This study shows that restoring the microbiome through a cocktail of probiotics is beneficial to cognition.

CRISPR/Cas9-Mediated miR-29b Editing as a Treatment of Muscle Atrophy in Mice: Overexpression of miR-29b leads to muscle atrophy, and this mouse study shows that gene therapy is an effective treatment against this condition.

News Nuggets

Automating Drug Testing With Human Organ Chips: Mimicking human vasculature, Tel Aviv researchers linked together up to 10 tiny organoids in order to automate drug testing.

Fighting Age-Related Diseases With $100 Genome Sequencing: Genome sequencing has gone from exorbitantly expensive to relatively cheap over the past two decades, and Illumina seeks to make it even cheaper, opening the door to yet more genome-targeted therapies.

Undoing Aging 2020 Postpones Conference Until October: Due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, Undoing Aging has postponed its annual conference until October of this year.

The Road to Reversing Epigenetic Aging: Multiple companies are working on using variants of Yamanaka factors to epigenetically reset our cells, making them effectively younger.

WHO Proposes Four COVID-19 Treatments: The World Health Organization is studying four proposed treatments that may be effective against this global pandemic.

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