Anti-aging products may soon become a thing of the past as two scientists from Nottingham University in the U.K. have found a protein that controls aging in the brain.As we age, the muscles and brain do not retain the qualities that they had in youth. The study results published in the academic journal Aging, say that the enzyme carbonic anhydrase has been found in greater amounts in samples of the middle-aged brain. Carbonic anhydrase is found in mitochondria that convert oxygen into energy in the body.
Led by Dr. Lisa Chakrabarti and Ph.D. student Amelia Pollard, of the university's School of Veterinary Medicine and Science, the study may provide the key to slowing the effects of aging on humans. "This gives us a very promising start in working out how we can best target this protein within the mitochondria to slow the effects of aging in the body while limiting other unwanted side effects on the body. It could potentially offer a significant new avenue in both tackling degenerative illnesses and the general effects of aging on the body," said Chakrabarti in a press statement.
"Using a specialist process called 2D gel electrophoresis, the scientists separated out all the proteins found within the mitochondria of brain cells and muscle cells from normal young brains and normal middle-aged brains and compared the two samples," it is further reported.
Aging in the brain can cause the onset of cognitive impairment affecting memory, reasoning and multitasking and can lead to dementia. The discovery will be helpful in producing new drugs and combating the development of certain diseases such as Alzheimer's and Parkinson's disease.