An anti-aging pill?
Recent efforts by Dr Lisa Chakrabarti and PhD student Amelia Pollard in the University’s School of Veterinary Medicine and Science, has centered on a family of proteins called carbonic anhydrase found within mitochondria — the cells’ ‘batteries’ which convert the oxygen we breathe into the energy (ATP) needed to power our body.
It seems that the family of proteins called carbonic anhydrase are playing a role in the aging process within the cell. Using 2D gel electrophoresis, the scientists separated the proteins found within the mitochondria of brain cells and muscle cells from normal young brains and normal middle-aged brains.
They observed the carbonic anhydrase was found in greater quantity and was more active in the samples of the middle-aged brain. Significantly, this increase was also reflected in samples from young brains suffering from early degeneration, suggesting that the increase is detrimental.
To find whether or not this is simply evidence of the body’s attempt to guard against this degeneration the scientists studied the effect of carbonic anhydrase on nematode worms.
They found that feeding carbonic anhydrase to the tiny c elegans worms — measuring around just one millimetre in length — reduced their life span.
They continue to search for compounds that may be successful in targeting carbonic anhydrase and to study what effect these potential inhibitors have on worms which have had their lives shortened by the protein.
This study could be the first step to the development of a new type of drug that targets carbonic anhydrase in just the body’s mitochondria to protect against aging and degeneration.
Of course now everyone will be running out to find a carbonic anhydrase inhibitor, right?
And of course it will not be that simple. Far more research must be done. And I’m certain that at the end of said research all will have change, perfect!
So just stick to your high dose resveratrol, and everything be everything.