By rejuvenating our gut, scientists believe they can make us live longer

CNRS researchers have tried to slow down the aging of the intestinal system to see if this could have a positive impact on the aging of the body.

Researchers have done a test on a type of fish that has great genetic similarities with humans, the zebrafish. The objective was to see if by slowing down the aging of the intestine, this could be beneficial for the aging of the body in general. Their results have been published in the journal Nature Aging.

The basic premise of these CNRS researchers is that the intestine is one of the organs that is most affected by our aging and which itself would have an impact on the aging of the rest of the body. He is the one who sees his rangefinders decline fastest in the body. Telomeres are found at the end of our chromosomes, they are a kind of protection for them. But over time, they deteriorate, which has the effect of preventing the cell from working properly, reminds Inserm.

Block the aging of this organ and benefit all the rest

That said, we can block the decline of telomeres, via an enzyme, telomerase. “This enzyme helps maintain the size of telomeres division after division. In humans, it is only active in stem cells and those at the origin of spermatozoa and ova”, explains Inserm.

So scientists have modified the DNA of zebrafish to ensure that these telomeres do not decline. And they realized that by slowing down the aging of the intestine, the surrounding organs were also preserved. This would support the idea that when the intestine ages, it no longer fully fulfills its role as a barrier, and therefore contributes to general aging. But if we counter its decline, it could help the whole organism… Because of its genetic proximity to humans, this discovery could one day be useful to humans.

Source : Nature Aging, Inserm

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