Throughout history there have been numerous sick, demented serial killers who were convinced that the blood of young people would keep them young. The “Blood Countess” Elizabeth Báthory killed hundreds of young girls and reportedly bathed in their blood to stay young.
Well, turns out those people might have been right. Science doesn’t judge.
In three recently published studies that might make you a little concerned that grandma is going to start hitting you up for more than a ride to the store soon, scientists discovered the blood of young mice seems to reverse the effects of aging of the muscles and brains of old mice.
“These are the tissues that are really affected by advancing age. Changes in these tissues are responsible for the changes that people worry about the most — loss of cognition and loss of independent function,” said Amy Wagers, a professor of stem cell and regenerative biology at Harvard University involved in two of the studies.
The treated mice were able to run longer and showed signs of sharper thinking, such as more sensitivity to changes in smell and better performance on memory tests.
Don’t start barricading yourself to guard your sweet young blood yet, though. The scientists still have to study to see if the same effect happens in humans. Some of the studies also depended on parabiosis, which means that the young mice and old mice’s circulatory systems were literally connected surgically. I don’t expect even grandma is going to want to get that close.
[Source: Boston Globe]