Scientists have discovered unexpected properties of a cure for HIV. The “reputation” of an already approved drug will make it possible to begin clinical trials in humans more quickly.
Aging is inextricably linked with chronic inflammatory processes in the body, even if a person does not have serious health problems. Scientists from Brown University (USA) decided to investigate the properties of the drug lamivudine against these irreversible processes and achieved promising results.
Lamivudin is known from the end of the last century and is used in the complex therapy of HIV and hepatitis B. Now scientists have discovered that the drug allows the body to resist some aspects of aging, writes Science Daily.
Studies on old mice and aging human cells have shown that lamivudine significantly reduces age-related inflammation.
“The resulting effect promises prospects for the treatment of age-related disorders in humans: Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s, arthritis, type 2 diabetes, and others,” says scientist John Sedivi.
The drug counteracts retrotransposing activity, when the so-called jumping genes copy themselves and move to new places in the genome. For age-related diseases, retrotransposons called L1, which are present in every type of human tissue, are especially important. It is against the background of the immune response to interferon that they can cause inflammation.
After taking lamivudine in mice, the signs of inflammation decreased after only two weeks. A longer course prevented skeletal muscle atrophy and exhaustion.
The image shows the cage of young mice (left), old ones (center), and old ones with lamivudine therapy (right).
The authors believe that the results obtained are a reason to plan clinical trials in humans. First of all, the team plans to investigate the effects of lamivudine for the treatment of Alzheimer’s disease and arthritis.
Most chronic diseases appear with age. It is believed that aging doubles the risks every eight years. Studying this relationship, scientists came to the conclusion that old age and chronic conditions have common genetic factors.