Aging is a spectre we all must face one day...but is this the way that it will always be? Medical researchers hope to delay or even reverse the onset of aging, and some are already claiming that they've made inroads to immortality.
To that end, it seems that an anti-aging substance may have been found, but not in the way you might expect. A cancer treatment drug for humans has been shown to reverse the signs of aging in dogs, monkeys, and mice, and may one day be key for finding an anti-aging solution for humans.
Rapamycin is a drug that is taken by cancer patients and organ transplant recipients.
As was noted, prior studies in mice and in marmoset monkeys that have shown positive anti-aging effects. The monkey tests were able to prove that the drug is safe, and was able to extend the life of middle aged mice by up to 60%.
Now, a testimonial from a pair of dog owners shows additional evidence of its anti-aging properties.
Two elderly dogs belonging to Paola Anderson and Sarah Godfrey were subjected to a treatment of rapamycin. Before the treatment, the dogs were barely able to walk. Now, they have renewed strength and vitality, able to run around and play with their owners now.
Not Yet A Miracle
So, are we supposed to be lining up for rapamycin treatments now?
Maybe not. The drug still has to undergo a lot of testing. As it stands, side effects of the drug include cancer, diabetes, infections and more. Also, even if the animal tests are completely successful, there is no guarantee it will be as effective in humans.
But that only means that more testing must be done. In fact, several studies on rapamycin treatments for humans have been done, and they "raise the possibility that (rapamycin) may have beneficial effects" on immune function.
"The rapamycin story is one of the most surprising, enticing, satisfying and unique stories in the history of medicine." says Mita in an article published in Targeted Oncology.