Chemical found to reverse insulin resistance and ageing

Fri, 20 Dec 2013
The chemical NAD+ has been found to have anti-aging and anti-diabetes properties that include reversing insulin resistance.

The discovery could be very important as insulin resistance is they key factor that leads to the development of type 2 diabetes.

The chemical NAD+ (nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide) is found naturally within the human body but levels of it decrease in the body as we get older.

The research team were keen to investigate what would happen if older mice were given a boost of NAD+ and the tests provided some remarkable results. 2 year old, elderly, mice were given a week of NAD+ medication and this resulted in changes to their muscles which became comparable to the muscles of much younger 6 month old mice.

The treated mice showed improvements in their muscles in terms of energy production, reduced muscle wastage, decreased inflammation and improved sensitivity to insulin. The researchers noted that muscle strength did not improve but pointed out that the treatment period was short and a longer treatment period may have produced improvements in muscle strength as well.

The improved sensitivity to insulin will be of particular interest to people with diabetes and for researchers that are investigating new treatment areas for type 2 diabetes. It's too early to look at this as a cure but it represents a promising new avenue of research.

In terms of aging, the researchers note that there are many more factors involved in aging than levels of NAD+. For instance, shortening of telomeres is one of many other factors that are linked with aging and disease development that would also need to be addressed before aging as a whole could begin to be tackled.
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