A British scientist has said new drugs that remove 'zombie cells' in our bodies could let humans live to the age of 200.
Dr Andrew Steele, a British computational biologist, recently authored a new book on longevity and has said new advances in senolytics – drugs that focus on the destruction of cells that degrade tissue function – could extend our lifespans.
Dr Steele explained: “I don't think there is any kind of absolute cap on how long we can live.”
Speaking to MailOnline, Dr Steele said: “Studies come out every few years that propose some kind of fundamental limit on human lifespan, but they're always missing one crucial piece: we've never tried treating the ageing process before.”
He added: “I can't see a physical or biological reason why people couldn't live to 200 — the challenge is whether we can develop the biomedical science to make it possible.”
Dr Steele pointed to advances in senolytics, which target senescent or ‘zombie’ cells that stop dividing, accumulate and then release compounds into our bodies that accelerate ageing.
MailOnline notes pills that flush these cells from our bodies are already in the human trial stage, and could be on the market within the next decade.
In 2020, medical journal The Lancet published a study that showed the ‘first evidence’ that senolytics are effective at decreasing senescent cells.
Tested on mice, the research noted: “Prof. James Kirkland and his team at Mayo Clinic have pioneered a new class of agents which eliminate senescent cells.
“Overall, in mice, administration of senolytic agents and elimination of senescent cells have shown to improve physical function and extend health span and lifespan.”
According to MailOnline, since the testing of senolytic drugs started on humans, billionaires including Jeff Bezos and Peter Thiel have invested in the drug.
LADbible has approached both Bezos and Thiel’s representatives for comment.
Dr Steele, who recently published Ageless: The New Science of Getting Older Without Getting Old, also pointed to the study of reptiles when trying to increase humans’ life expectancy.
He explained that if you place a human cell in a petri dish, it would divide approximately 50 times before stopping, whereas a Galapagos tortoise cell divides over a hundred times.
Galapagos tortoises have a lifespan of up to 120 years and are just one example of a long-living reptile that can help scientists better understand the ways our cells age.
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