Aging is the process during which structural and functional changes accumulate in an organism due to the passage of time.
Until now, many scientists have endeavored to reverse person’s age. In a recent study, Israeli scientists have discovered a unique protocol of treatments in a pressure chamber can reverse two significant processes associated with aging and its illnesses: the shortening of telomeres and the accumulation of senescent cells in the body.
Focusing on immune cells containing DNA, obtained from the participants’ blood, the study discovered a significant lengthening – up to 38% – of the telomeres and a decrease of up to 37% in the presence of senescent cells.
In human trials, this new HBOT (treatments with high-pressure oxygen) reverse aging by 25 years.
The research was conducted on 35 volunteers aged 64 years or over of age. The volunteers were provided with clean oxygen for 90 minutes a day, five days a week, in a pressurized chamber.
Each participant provided blood samples at four different points in time. Before, in the end, and after the treatments, the researchers analyzed various immune cells (cells containing DNA) in the blood and compared the results.
The findings indicated that the treatments actually reversed the aging process in two of its significant aspects: The telomeres at the ends of the chromosomes grew longer instead of shorter, at a rate of 20%-38% for the different cell types; and the percentage of senescent cells in the overall cell population was reduced significantly – by 11%-37% depending on cell type.
Prof. Shai Efrati led the study, a faculty member of the Sackler School of Medicine and the Sagol School of Neuroscience at Tel Aviv University said, “For many years our team has been engaged in hyperbaric research and therapy – treatments based on protocols of exposure to high-pressure oxygen at various concentrations inside a pressure chamber. Over the years, our achievements included the improvement of brain functions damaged by age, stroke, or brain injury. In the current study, we wished to examine the impact of HBOT on healthy and independent aging adults and to discover whether such treatments can slow down, stop or even reverse the normal aging process at the cellular level.”
“Today, telomere shortening is considered the ‘Holy Grail’ of the biology of aging. Researchers around the world are trying to develop pharmacological and environmental interventions that enable telomere elongation. Our HBOT protocol was able to achieve this, proving that the aging process can be reversed at the basic cellular-molecular level.”
Dr. Amir Hadanny, Chief Medical Research Officer of the Sagol Center for Hyperbaric Medicine and Research at the Shamir Medical Center, said, “Until now, interventions such as lifestyle modifications and intense exercise were shown to have some inhibiting effect on telomere shortening. But in our study, only three months of HBOT were able to elongate telomeres at rates far beyond any currently available interventions or lifestyle modifications. With this pioneering study, we have opened a door for further research on the cellular impact of HBOT and its potential for reversing the aging process.”
- Yafit Hachmo et al. Hyperbaric oxygen therapy increases telomere length and decreases immunosenescence in isolated blood cells: a prospective trial. DOI: 10.18632/aging.202188