Drug could be used to revert the ageing of stem cells

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Scientists from The University of Sheffield have found that a drug used to treat osteoporosis could be used to revert the ageing of stem cells.

The pioneering research found that Zoledronate is able to extend the lifespan of mesenchymal stem cells by reducing DNA damage - where stem cells lose their ability to maintain and repair the tissues in which they live. Zoledronate protects the stem cells from DNA damage enhancing their survival and maintaining function.

Professor Ilaria Bellantuono said: “This drug has delayed mortality in osteoporosis patients, but we didn’t know why until now. We want to understand whether the drug can be used to delay the ageing in stem cells in older people and improve the maintenance of tissues such as the heart and immune cells.