MADRID – Spanish biologist Pura Muñoz Cánoves is involved in an exciting project by Altos Labs. Their goal? Extend human lifespan and improve quality of life.
The international company has an impressive budget of 2.7 billion euros at its disposal for this purpose. It talks about “the beginning of a new era in biomedical science”. With a team of world-famous scientists, including Nobel Prize winners, 61-year-old Valencian Muñoz Cánoves is working to unravel the secrets of the aging process.
The secret of cell reprogramming
The researchers at Altos Labs, including Muñoz Cánoves, focus on the possibility of ‘reprogramming’ cells. This process, discovered by Nobel Prize winner Shinya Yamanaka, can return cells to a younger state. The results in mice are promising: they lived longer and showed signs of rejuvenation.
Not only live longer but also live better
In an interview in El País, Muñoz Cánoves emphasizes the importance of a better quality of life, not just a longer life. She believes that by improving cell health, age-related diseases such as Alzheimer’s and heart disease can be delayed or even prevented.
Although science has made great strides, the path to practical applications is long. Muñoz Cánoves and her team face the challenge of applying these techniques safely and effectively to people. She emphasizes that we are still far from applying these techniques in practice.
The research into muscle regeneration
Muñoz Cánoves has specifically focused on the regeneration of muscle tissue. By understanding and repairing muscle tissue at the cellular level, she hopes to contribute to a better understanding of general tissue regeneration and aging.
From mouse to human
Experiments with mice give hope, but the transition to human applications is complex and still requires a lot of research and development. Muñoz Cánoves is cautiously optimistic about future possibilities.
Diet and lifestyle
In addition to her work in the laboratory, Muñoz Cánoves also investigates the impact of diet and lifestyle on aging. Studies in mice show that restrictions in diet and eating times can lead to improved health and possibly a longer life.
It should be noted that although compounds such as metformin and rapamycin have shown potential in extending health and longevity, there is currently no cocktail available to combat aging in humans.
Pura Muñoz Cánoves has received the Santiago Ramón y Cajal National Prize in Biology for the contribution of its stem cell research in the field of muscle regeneration and aging, and the application of said discoveries to the treatment of various pathologies such as muscular dystrophy.