It sounds like something from a science fiction film, but a pill to counter the ageing process could become a reality.
Scientists in Russia are testing a new formula, which they claim can delay the start of the ageing process.
Researcher Dr Maxim Skulachev, from the Moscow State University project, said: 'A lot of aging diseases developed much slower.'
The scientists are using a 'new type of antioxidant', which they hope will impact on on the mitochondria, the energy-producing part of cells, which is seen as triggering ageing. 'The mitochondria are to be blamed for heart attacks, they are linked to diseases like Alzheimer's and Parkinson's,' he said.
He pointed to the naked mole-rat of east Africa renowned for longevity and evidently immune to cancer.
A realistic goal was to aim for a life span for humans of 120, and anti-ageing medication was 'technically possible', he told Moskovsky Komsomolets newspaper.
'I don't believe we will be able to live to 800,' he said.
'Most probably, some new disease will emerge, let's say, a typical disease for a 120-year-old.
'That was the case with cancer, which was a rare disease when ancient people died much younger.'
The Russian tests have not led to an significant life span increase, but delayed the onset of ageing, he said.
'If it turns out that diseases develop more slowly, our idea to fight aging through mitochondria is the right one, added Dr Skulachev, who has been working to perfect his treatment for decades.
'It will be possible to postpone old age.'(Ver)
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