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Tardigrades, humanity's fountain of youth?

Tardigrades, humanity's fountain of youth?

A US study recently published in the journal suggests that a protein found in tardigrades, microscopic animals known for their unyielding strength, could help extend the lifespan of human cells. Protein science.

The “water bear” is only half a millimeter long, and can survive in almost any environment, from extreme drought to temperatures near absolute zero, massive levels of radiation and even the vacuum of space.

However, according to work conducted at the University of Wyoming, it is likely possible to harness this tardigrade's superpower.

France Press agency

In an article published on the university's website, researcher Silvia Sanchez Martinez explained that the water bear survives the worst conditions thanks to proteins that form a gelatinous substance in its cells, which slows down its metabolism.

“Surprisingly, when we introduce these proteins into human cells, they freeze and slow down their metabolism, as in tardigrades. In addition, when we put human cells containing these proteins in a biostable state, they become more resistant.” to stress, giving human cells some of the capabilities of tardigrades.

Ultimately, tardigrade proteins could slow human aging, said Silvia Sanchez Martinez, who plans to continue her research with her team.

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