Researchers find key to slowing the aging process

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MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — Ponce de Leon may somewhere have a smile on his face, after the University of Minnesota announced Tuesday it may have discovered something akin to the fountain of youth.

Researchers have announced that a natural product has been shown to reduce the level of damaged cells in the human body caused by aging.

The product, called Fisetin, is described as a senotherapeutic that extends health and lifespan, as researchers described treating mice with it and noting improvements in both.

Fisetin is found in many fruits and vegetables.

“These results suggest that we can extend the period of health, termed healthspan, even towards the end of life,” University of Minnesota Medical School faculty Paul D. Robbins said.

Robbins published the research along with the U’s Laura J. Niedernhofer and Mayo Clinic investigators James L. Kirkland and Tamara Tchkonia.

The research details the possibility to reduce the burden on damaged cells, also known as senescent cells.

The University of Minnesota reported: “As people age, they accumulate damaged cells. When the cells get to a certain level of damage they go through an aging process of their own, called cellular senescence. The cells also release inflammatory factors that tell the immune system to clear those damaged cells. A younger person’s immune system is healthy and is able to clear the damaged cells. But as people age, they aren’t cleared as effectively. Thus they begin to accumulate, cause low level inflammation and release enzymes that can degrade the tissue.”

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