Wrinkles have found their match. Science has found a way to eliminate the onset of wrinkles, muscle wasting and even cataracts (at least in mice):
It was done by "flushing out" retired cells that had stopped dividing. They accumulate naturally with age.
The scientists believe their findings could eventually "really have an impact" in the care of the elderly.
Experts said the results were "fascinating", but should be taken with a bit of caution.
The study, published in Nature, focused on what are known as "senescent cells". They stop dividing into new cells and have an important role in preventing tumours from progressing.
These cells are cleared out by the immune system, but their numbers build up with time. The researchers estimated that around 10% of cells are senescent in very old people.
Scientists at the Mayo Clinic, in the US, devised a way to kill all senescent cells in genetically engineered mice.