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  • Gene Chip Technology, Available As Soon As Next Year, Would Distinguish Biological Age From Chronological (Calendar) Age With Simple Blood Test

    September 7, 2015: by Bill Sardi

    On the heels of submission for an FDA-approved trial of what may become the first FDA-approved anti-aging pill [ResveratrolNews June 22, 2015] comes word that scientists have developed gene chip technology that can rapidly analyze a blood sample to distinguish biological age from chronological (calendar) age in humans. [Daily Mail UK Sept 6, 2015]

    The technology was not confined to lab animals but rather was proven in humans, which suggests it could become available as early as next year and have immediate application to help identify healthy organ donors and to establish life and health insurance rates.  [Genome Biology Volume 16, Sept 2015]

    One-hundred fifty (150) genes were identified as activators of “healthy aging” in humans.  The biological age of 70-year old adults differed from their actual age by more than 20 years.  Biologically some adults were 80 years old while others were 60.

    The test analyzed the expression (activation) of 150 genes associated with healthy aging.  An optimum RNA signature for healthy aging was developed.  The higher the score at age 70 indicated better mental faculties and kidney function, for example.

    The gene score at chronological age ~70 years was unrelated to conventional lifestyle regulated biomarkers (e.g., blood pressure, glucose, cholesterol, or renal function).

    The approach was novel because we first sought to define a set of genes associated with healthy ageing in ‘normal’ 65-year-old subjects rather than gene expression (activation) associated with disease or extreme longevity.

    Should the anti-diabetic drug metformin be approved by the Food & Drug Administration as an anti-aging pill, the question arises as to what criteria would be used to prescribe it.  Would an adult have to be diagnosed with premature aging to receive such a drug?  This gene chip technology may help answer that question.

    The idea of testing for activation of healthy aging genes rather than disease genes suggests a model for healthy longevity is being established in humans for the first time.

    Calorie restriction (reduction of calorie intake by 40-50%) is known to double the healthspan and lifespan of laboratory animals.  Life-long adherence to a limited calorie diet has been shown to activate 831 longevity genes using the same gene chip technology used in the above-mentioned human study.

    In a short-term study (12-weeks) published in 2008 calorie restriction significantly altered 198 of those 831 longevity genes and the red wine molecule resveratrol, known as a molecular mimic of calorie restriction, activated 225 genes.  However, a proprietary blend of micronized/microencapsulated resveratrol, quercetin and rice bran IP6 activated 1711 genes, including 82% of those 831 longevity genes.  [Experimental Gerontology Sept 2008]  This nutraceutical is the closest molecular mimic to a calorie-restricted diet tested to date.  [Longevinex®]  — ©2015 Bill Sardi,

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