In the best news (by a long shot) we’ve heard all year, scientists now think they can reverse the aging process. We repeat, scientists now think they can reverse the aging process. In a recent study, published in the Cell journal, a team of scientists showed that a new form of gene therapy had a rejuvenating effect on mice. After treatment, they looked younger, lived 30% longer, healed more quickly when injured and even had better posture (their spines were straighter). The California-based scientist who led the research, Juan Carlos Izpisua Belmonte, told The Guardian, “Our study shows that aging may not have to proceed in one single direction. With careful modulation, aging might be reversed.”
Unfortunately, the type of therapy utilized on the mice is not appropriate for use on humans, and therefore we may not reap the benefits of these findings as a species for decades. Still, this is a huge development in the study of aging, and scientists hope eventually to improve not only lifespan but quality of life by staving off aging-related diseases. We hadn’t even thought of this as a benefit to anti-aging medicine—since society has brainwashed into thinking aging only matters in terms of the deterioration of our physical appearance (ahem)—but now that they mention it, it’d be pretty cool not to have to suffer from sickness as we get older, either.