Having a bad day? We just found something that might cheer you up. Scientists studying mice have discovered a new form of gene therapy that potentially reverses some of the signs of ageing. Yep, we're talking grey hair, wrinkles and even cardiovascular and spinal health. The study used mice as, er, guinea pigs, and after six weeks of gene therapy treatment the mice looked younger, healed quicker, had straighter spines, improved cardiovascular health and even lived 30% longer.
"Our study shows that ageing may not have to proceed in one single direction. With careful modulation, ageing might be reversed," said Juan Carlos Izpisua Belmonte from the Salk Institute study in La Jolla, California to The Guardian. While the team of scientists were quick to point out the therapy may not be available to humans for another decade - don't be disheartened - it's a potentially revolutionary way to treat an ageing population and even a way of looking at ageing itself.
"We believe that this approach will not lead to immortality," Izpisua Belmonte reiterated. "There are probably still limits that we will face in terms of complete reversal of ageing. Our focus is not only extension of lifespan but most importantly health-span." The rejuvenating treatment uses stem cell technology to literally rewind the clock on the cells of adult mice. We won't go into the specifics, but let's just say we remain eternally hopefully that one day this process can be applied to our weathered, age-spotted human skin.