Aging is connected with the vigorous changes in the biological, environmental, physiological, social aspects, and psychological behavior of a living being. Aging among some humans result in increased susceptibility to disease, disability, and frailty.
The team of researchers examined aging in yeast to surmise if varying cells age at the same rate and due to the same cause.
With the same DNA under the same environment, yeast cells displayed varied structures of the nucleolus (red) and mitochondria (green), underscoring the causes of varying aging paths.
The UCSD scientists believe that they discovered a way to reprogram cells in order for their life spans to dramatically rise, reported Times Now.
The researchers noted that cells with similar genetic material under the same environment aged in remarkably different ways.
The researchers published their findings in the journal "Science," reported CNN Philippines.
The scientists learned that around half of the yeast cells aged due to a gradual decline in the nucleolus (a round body located in the nucleus of a cell) through methods such as computer modeling and microfluidics.
They discovered that they could manipulate the aging process through computer simulations to reprogram the master circuit and alter its DNA, reported Khaleej Times.
They stated that cells take one of 2 different paths chosen early in their life cycles: nuclear or mitochondrial (that do not change).
As an attempt towards delaying the aging process, the scientists were able to modify cells to take on a third aging route that remarkably increased their lifespans, ensuring that they remained healthy throughout the process.
According to health experts, the findings will offer the public the capacity to delay the aging process alongside illnesses that come along with it.
The single-celled fungi were chosen because the cells were convenient to manipulate.
The other half of the yeast cells aged due to a dysfunction of mitochondria (responsible for producing the cell's energy).
"To understand how cells make these decisions, we identified the molecular processes underlying each aging route and the connections among them, revealing a molecular circuit that controls cell aging, analogous to electric circuits that control home appliances," according to Nan Hao, senior author of the study and associate professor in UCSD's division of biological sciences' molecular biology section.
The scientists were able to develop a "novel aging route" with an extended lifespan which could eventually lead to the probability of delaying aging among humans.
"This is an aging path that never existed, but because we understand how it is regulated, we can basically design or regulate a new aging path," stated Hao.
This significant breakthrough of the team in delaying the aging process could have imposing implications with regard to our lifestyles.
The scientists are looking to extend testing on chemical "cocktails" in complex organisms with the ultimate endpoint of conducting testing on humans.
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