Nervous system may regulate aging processes
A class of anti-seizure medications slows the rate of aging in roundworms, according to researchers at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis. When exposed to drugs used to treat epilepsy in humans, worms lived longer and retained youthful functions longer than normal. Because the drugs affect nerve signals, the researchers observations suggest that the nervous system influences aging processes. The findings are reported in the January 14 issue of the journal Science.
The anti-aging effect was revealed in a random screening of 19 drugs approved for treating a variety of disorders in humans. "We didnt start with a hypothesis about what causes aging," says senior author Kerry Kornfeld, M.D., Ph.D., associate professor of molecular biology and pharmacology. "We wanted to look in an unbiased way at available compounds to see if any of them happened to have anti-aging activity."
Gwen Ericson | EurekAlert!
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