Discovery of ageing protein

An international collaboration co-ordinated by the University of Coimbra, Portugal, has identified a protein associated with ageing in the circulatory system.

The study published in Nature Communications examined cells taken from blood vessels of patients with Progeria, a disease that causes premature ageing, and found that the concentration of one particular protein was far higher in these cells compared with healthy cells.

Using a mouse model of the disease, researchers then found that blocking the action of the protein with a drug could reduce the effects of the disease on the blood vessels.

The team hope that this information will lead to the development of new drugs to target this protein, and help improve the life-expectancy of these patients.

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