In a new study, scientists have reported that they have reversed the biological aging process. A group of elderly adults participated in the study that was conducted by researchers from Tel Aviv University and the Shamir Medical Center. The participants were given a type of oxygen therapy in order to reverse two important factors in biological aging (telomere length and senescent cells accumulation).
As people get older, they have shorter telomeres which are protective caps that are located at the end of each chromosome, and they get an increased amount of old senescent cells that don’t work properly.
A total of 35 adults aged 64 and older participated in the clinical trial where they were given Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy to find out if it could in fact reverse the aging process. The participants were put inside of a pressurized chamber where they were given pure oxygen for 90 minutes a day, five days a week, for three consecutive months. (A picture of the chamber can be seen here.)
At the end of the three-month experiment, the length of the participants’ telomeres increased by an average of 20% and their senescent cells were reduced by as much as 37%. To put this into better perspective, the outcome of the three-month long oxygen therapy trial revealed that the cells of the participants were like they were 25 years ago.
Shai Efrati, who is a professor at the Faculty of Medicine and Sagol School of Neuroscience at Tel Aviv University as well as a co-author of the study, explained these incredible results, “Since telomere shortening is considered the ‘Holy Grail’ of the biology of aging, many pharmacological and environmental interventions are being extensively explored in the hopes of enabling telomere elongation.” “The significant improvement of telomere length shown during and after these unique HBOT protocols provides the scientific community with a new foundation of understanding that ageing can, indeed, be targeted and reversed at the basic cellular-biological level.”
While previous studies conducted by other companies included lifestyle, diet, and even medical changes to the participants’ lives, the one conducted in Israel focused just on the oxygen therapy to help regenerate the body’s cells.
Another co-author of the study, Dr. Amir Hadanny, explained this further, “Until now, interventions such as lifestyle modifications and intense exercise were shown to have some inhibition effect on the expected telomere length shortening.” “However, what is remarkable to note in our study, is that in just three months of therapy, we were able to achieve such significant telomere elongation – at rates far beyond any of the current available interventions or lifestyle modifications.”
Their study was published in the journal Aging where it can be read in full.
This is promising news for people who wish to turn back their aging clocks, especially those who have noticed a few extra grey hairs from all the stress caused by 2020.