Dr Mercola Interviews Dr Villeponteau the Formulator of Stem Cell 100

Dr Bryant Villeponteau the formulator of Stem Cell 100 and other Life Code nutraceuticals was recently interviewed by Dr Mercola who owns the largest health web site on the internet. Dr. Villeponteau is also the author of Decoding Longevity a new book which will be released during December. He is a leading researcher in novel anti-aging therapies involving stem cells an area in which he has been a pioneer for over three decades.

Stem cell technology could have a dramatic influence on our ability to live longer and replace some of our failing parts, which is the inevitable result of the aging process. With an interest in aging and longevity, Dr. Villeponteau started out by studying developmental biology. If we could understand development, we could understand aging, he says. Later, his interest turned more toward the gene regulation aspects. While working as a professor at the University of Michigan at the Institute of Gerontology, he received, and accepted, a job offer from Geron Corporation a Bay Area startup, in the early 90s.

They were working on telomerase, which I was pretty excited about at the time. I joined them when they first started, he says. We had an all-out engagement there to clone human telomerase. It had been cloned in other animals but not in humans or mammals.

If you were to unravel the tip of the chromosome, a telomere is about 15,000 bases long at the moment of conception in the womb. Immediately after conception, your cells begin to divide, and your telomeres begin to shorten each time the cell divides. Once your telomeres have been reduced to about 5,000 bases, you essentially die of old age.

What you have to know about telomerase is that it’s only on in embryonic cells. In adult cells, it’s totally, for the most part, turned off, with the exception of adult stem cells, Dr. Villeponteau explains. Adult stem cells have some telomerase not full and not like the embryonic stem cells, but they do have some telomerase activity.

Most of the research currently being done, both in academia and industrial labs, revolves around either embryonic stem cells, or a second type called induced pluripotent stem cells (iPS). Dr. Villeponteau, on the other hand, believes adult stem cells are the easiest and most efficient way to achieve results.

That said, adult stem cells do have their drawbacks. While they’re your own cells, which eliminates the problem of immune-related issues, there’s just not enough of them. Especially as you get older, there are fewer and fewer adult stem cells, and they tend to become increasingly dysfunctional too. Yet another hurdle is that they don’t form the tissues that they need to form…

To solve such issues, Dr. Villeponteau has created a company with the technology and expertise to amplify your adult stem cells a million-fold or more, while still maintaining their ability to differentiate all the different cell types, and without causing the cells to age. Again, it is the adult stem cells ability to potentially cure, or at least ameliorate, many of our age-related diseases by regenerating tissue that makes this field so exciting.

Dr Villeponteau believes you can add many years, likely decades, to your life simply by eating right, exercising (which promotes the production of muscle stem cells, by the way) and living an otherwise clean and healthy lifestyle. Extreme life extension, on the other hand, is a different matter.

His book, Decoding Longevity, covers preventive strategies to prolong your life, mainly diet, exercise, and supplements. A portion of the book also covers future developments in the area of more radical life extension, such as stem cell technology.

If you would like to read the entire interview here is a link to the text version:

Click here for more information about Stem Cell 100

Transcript of Interview With Dr. Bryant Villeponteau by Dr. Joseph Mercola

Aging Reversed / ABC News

Now researchers have found a way not just to stop, but, reverse the aging process. The key is something called a telomere. We all have them. They are the tips or caps of your chromosomes. They are long and stable in young adults, but, as we age they become shorter, damaged and frayed. When they stop working we start aging and experience things like hearing and memory loss.

In a recent study published in the peer reviewed journal Nature scientists took mice that were prematurely aged to the equivalent of 80-year-old humans, added an enzyme and essentially turned their telomeres back on. After the treatment they were the physiological equivalent of young adults. You can see the before and after pictures in the videos above. Brain function improved, their fertility was restored it was a remarkable reversal of the aging process. In the top video the untreated mouse shows bad skin, gray hair and it is balding. The mouse with it’s telomeres switched back on has a dark coat color, the hair is restored and the coat has a nice healthy sheen to it. Even more dramatic is the change in brain size. Before treatment the aged mice had 75% of a normal size brain like a patient with severe Alzheimers. After the telomeres were reactivated the brain returned to normal size. As for humans while it is just one factor scientists say the longer the telomeres the better the chances for a more graceful aging.

The formal study Telomere dysfunction induces metabolic and mitochondrial compromise was published in Nature.

Additional information published by Harvard can be found in the following articles.

Scientists Find Root Molecular Cause of Declining Health in the Old

Decoding Immortality – Smithsonian Channel Video about the Discovery of Telomerase

While scientists are not yet able to accomplish the same results in humans we believe we have developed a nutraceutical to help prolong youth and possibly extend life until age reversal therapy for humans becomes available.

Stem Cells Secret’s of 115 Year Old Woman

New evidence that adult stem cells are critical to human aging has recently been published on a study done on a super-centenarian woman that lived to be 115 years. At death, her circulating stem cell pool had declined to just two active stem cells from stem cell counts that are typically more than a thousand in younger adults. Super-centenarians have survived all the normal diseases that kill 99.9% of us before 100 years of age, so it has been a mystery as to what actually kills these hardy individuals. This recent data suggest that stem cell decline may be the main contributor to aging. If so, stabilizing stem cells may be the best thing one can do to slow your rate of aging.

There are many theories of aging that have been proposed. For example, damage to cells and tissues from oxidative stress has been one of the most popular fundamental theories of aging for more than half a century. Yet antioxidant substances or genes that code antioxidant enzymes have proven largely ineffective in slowing aging when tested in model animals. Thus, interest by scientists has shifted to other hypotheses that might provide a better explanation for the slow declines in function with age.

Stem cells provide one such promising mechanism of aging. Of course, we all know that babies are young and vigorous, independent of the age of their parents. This is because adults have embryonic stem cells that can generate young new cells needed to form a complete young baby. Indeed, these embryonic stem cells are the product of continuously evolving stem cell populations that go back to the beginning of life on earth over 3.5 billion years ago!

In adults, the mostly immortal embryonic stem cells give rise to mortal adult stem cells in all the tissues of the body. These adult stem cells can regenerate your cells and tissues as they wear out and need replacement. Unfortunate, adult stem cells also age, which leads to fewer cells and/or loss of function in cell replacement. As functional stem cells decline, skin and organs decline with age.

Blood from world’s oldest woman suggests life limit

Time Magazine: Long-Life Secrets From The 115-Year-Old Woman

Somatic mutations found in the healthy blood compartment of a 115-yr-old woman demonstrate oligoclonal hematopoiesis

The somatic mutation burden in healthy white blood cells (WBCs) is not well known. Based on deep whole-genome sequencing, we estimate that approximately 450 somatic mutations accumulated in the nonrepetitive genome within the healthy blood compartment of a 115-yr-old woman. The detected mutations appear to have been harmless passenger mutations: They were enriched in noncoding, AT-rich regions that are not evolutionarily conserved, and they were depleted for genomic elements where mutations might have favorable or adverse effects on cellular fitness, such as regions with actively transcribed genes. The distribution of variant allele frequencies of these mutations suggests that the majority of the peripheral white blood cells were offspring of two related hematopoietic stem cell (HSC) clones. Moreover, telomere lengths of the WBCs were significantly shorter than telomere lengths from other tissues. Together, this suggests that the finite lifespan of HSCs, rather than somatic mutation effects, may lead to hematopoietic clonal evolution at extreme ages.

New Cell Discovery for Healing Hearts

New research at the University of Calgary has discovered what was once an unidentified cell population in the pericardial fluid which is found inside the sac that surrounds the heart. This discovery could possibly lead to new treatments for people with injured hearts. The study was funded by the Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada.

The team discovered that a specific cell known as a Gata6+ pericardial cavity macrophage, helped heal an injured heart in a mouse. This cell was found in the pericardial fluid of a mouse that had a heart injury. The same cells were also found in the human pericardium of people who also had injured hearts. This confirmed that the cells that repair offer promise of a new therapy for people with heart disease.

Heart doctors had not previously explored the possibility that cells which are outside the heart might participate in the repair and healing of hearts following injury. Compared to other organs, the heart has a very limited capacity for repair which is why heart disease is the number one cause of death in North America.

The discovery of this new cell which can help heal an injured heart muscle will open the possibility of new hope and therapies for millions of people who suffer from diseases of the heart. It has always been known that the heart sits inside a strange fluid filled sac. It is now known that this pericardial fluid is quite rich with healing cells. These particular cells might hold the secret to regeneration and repair of new heart muscle.

By working together and bringing expertise across many disciplines, the initial researchers with a cardiac surgeon and clinician researcher, identified this cell in less than three years. This is a relatively fast time frame to move from lab research and animals to people.

The next goal is to recruit a basic scientist to move the current research to a broader study of repair of the human heart. The new program will further extend the collaboration between clinical and basic research to identify new therapeutics aimed at improving heart repair.

To view the original scientific study click below

Gata6+ Pericardial Cavity Macrophages Relocate to the Injured Heart and Prevent Cardiac Fibrosis.

Enhance Cognitive Youth with Online Brain Games

A new study conducted at the University of California, Irvine, has found that online brain game exercises can help people in their 70’s and 80’s multitask cognitively even as well as people 50 years younger! This valuable tool, gives older adults the ability to handle today’s daily onslaught of information which can be very taxing for seniors.

Like our bodies, we can work out and train our brains to improve mental performance. The research has discovered that older people who completed some very specific tasks gained the ability to beef up their brain’s ability to switch between tasks in a game which was at a level similar to 20 and 30 year people who were untrained.

The findings emphasize the cognitive cost of multitasking. Multitasking dilutes function through splitting focus. The findings indicate ways in which people throughout their lifespan can beat brain drain which can be brought on by the natural aging process and the increasingly crowded multimedia environment.

For the study the team partnered with Lumosity which is an online platform offering a variety of daily brain training games. They focused on data obtained from Lumonsity’s “Ebb and Flow” game which is a task switching games which challenges the ability of the brain to shift between cognitive processes interpreting movement and shapes.

Of the millions of individuals who played Ebb and Flow between 2012 and 2017, the team randomly sampled performance of approximately 1,000 users within two categories – those who ranged in age from 21 to 80 and had finished fewer than 60 sessions of training; and adults aged 71 to 80 who had logged a minimum of 1,000 sessions.

The research team found that the majority of the older and highly practiced players matched or exceeded the performance of the younger users who didn’t play the game very much. Any lead seniors however, significantly declined after the 21 to 30 year old participants completed at least 10 practice sessions.

Improved lifestyles and advances in the medical field have allowed people to live longer. Brain health is an important factor in that equation. With consistent upkeep, cognitive youth can be retained into the golden years.

To view the original scientific study click below

A large-scale analysis of task switching practice effects across the lifespan.

Double Early Mortality Risk Linked to Sedentary Lifestyle

According to a recent study, 20 years of a sedentary lifestyle is linked to two times the risk of premature death when compared to being physically active. The HUNT study’s findings suggest that in order to get maximum health benefits from physical activity to protect against premature cardiovascular and all cause death, a person needs to be continually physically active.

The focus of the study was to see how changes in physical activity over a 22 year period were related to subsequent death. Most previous studies investigating the relationship between longevity and physical activity asked the participants just once what their level of physical activity was then followed them for several years. However, physical activity is a behavior that can change with many people. Therefore, it is important to see how such changes over time may relate to the risk of death in the future.

The HUNT study asked all residents of Norway who were age 20 and older to participate in their study for three time periods – 1984 to 1986, 1995 to 1997, and 2006 to 2008. At each time point the participants were asked about their duration and frequency of leisure time physical activity. The study used the data obtained from the first and third surveys.

23,146 men and women were included in the analysis. Physical activity was categorized as inactive, moderate level which was less than two hours per week, and high which was two or more hours per week. The participants were then divided into groups depending on their levels of activity at each survey date.

The data from the physical activity was linked to information in regards to deaths until the end of 2013 through the Norwegian Cause of Death Registry. The death risk in each physical activity group was compared to the reference group which was participants who reported a high level of physical activity at each survey.

When compared to the reference group, the participants who were inactive 1984 to 1986 and 2006 to 2008 showed a 2 fold higher likelihood of all cause death and a 2.7 fold higher risk of dying from cardiovascular disease. The participants with moderate physical activity at both time periods had 60% and 90% higher risks of all cause and cardiovascular deaths, respectively, when compared to the reference group.

In regards to the participants who changed categories between the surveys who went from inactive status to active status, they had a mortality risk that fell between those who were continually active or continually inactive. However, those who went from a highly active status to inactive had a similar risk of death as those who were inactive at both survey times.

The team notes that there are clear recommendations in regards to the amount of exercise adults should be engaging in to optimize their health. This is 150 minutes per week of moderate intensity activity or 75 minutes of a more vigorous intensity aerobic physical activity.

Another important point is that levels of physical activity even lower than the advised levels will give some health benefits. Physical fitness is shown to be more important than the amount of exercise. This includes all types of exercise that will make a person breathe heavily.

People should engage in activities they like and are encouraged to get more movement into their everyday life. The data indicates that a person can compensate for a previously sedentary lifestyle and the sooner they get active, the sooner positive results will occur. The team’s advice is to establish good exercise habits as early in life as possible. The benefits from an active lifestyle go beyond protection from premature death. They also effect the body’s cognitive function and organs. Being physically active helps people live longer and better lives.

First Cornea Transplant made with Reprogrammed Stem Cells

A research team at the Osaka University has conducted the world’s first corneal tissue transplant using reprogrammed stem cells derived from skin tissue. The patient was a Japanese woman in her 40’s who suffered from an epithelial stem cell deficiency in her cornea. This condition can make vision blurry and can lead to blindness.

The patient received the transplant on her left eye on July 25th and was released from the hospital on August 23rd. Her eyesight had improved considerably and no problems have been detected so far. Since this was the first operation of it’s type, the team will continue to monitor the patient quite closely.

For the procedure, the team created sheets of corneal cells from induced pluripotent stem cells. These cell types are created by reprogramming adult skin cells obtained from a donor into an embryonic state where they can transform into other types of cells such as corneal cells. The cells which are transplanted are expected to continue making more corneal cells and therefore help in sight recovery.

The thin sheet like corneal tissues used by the team do not contain immune cells which leads the team to believe they are unlikely to be rejected. Conventional corneal transplant operations are subject to rejection due to the fact that immune cells get implanted with the rest of the cornea.

The team believe that just one transplant should remain effective throughout a patient’s lifetime. They plan to conduct another transplant later this year.

These pluripotent stem cells can grow into any type of body tissue. The world’s first clinical study using these stem cells was conducted in 2014 transplanting retina cells into a women who had age related macular degeneration. In the future it will become possible to create any part of the body using this technique. In addition the patients own tissue could be used so that the cells in the new gland or organ will contain the patients own DNA.

Kohji Nishida, the team leader, may have created a new treatment for people suffering from corneal disease. Current procedures require waiting for corneal donations from donors who are deceased. About 1,600 patients in Japan are waiting for corneal donations.

The team hopes to make the treatment practical in five years. Corneal disease is a result of loss of cells in the part of the eye that produce the cornea due to injury or illness.

To view the original scientific study click below

Woman is first to receive cornea made from ‘reprogrammed’ stem cells.

Increase your Longevity Odds with an Upbeat View of Life

New research suggests that an upbeat view towards life might increase your odds for longevity. The findings come from a study looking at optimism and longevity among nearly 1,400 men and 70,000 women. The current study builds on previous research which linked higher levels of an optimistic view to reduced risks of premature death and chronic illness.

The study conducted by the U.S. National Center for Post Traumatic Stress Disorder at the Veterans Affairs Boston Healthcare Center, suggests that optimistic people are much more likely to achieve exceptional longevity. Exceptional longevity was defined as living to the age of 85 or older.

When compared to the least optimistic people, the most optimistic women and men were 50% to 70% more likely to live to the advanced milestone. The study also found that 11% to 15% were more likely to live longer overall.

The study’s results held up even when other influences such as marital status, chronic health issues, depression, educational background and friendships were taken into account. Regardless of a person’s habits, optimism was shown to also be a powerful predictor of longevity. This included alcohol and tobacco use, eating well, exercise and getting regular medical care.

Previous studies have mostly focused on problems or deficits which increase the risk of dying. The new study was novel in that the team considered the benefits of optimism, a psychological asset, in promoting longevity.

The team suggests that their findings may point towards new interventions that may encourage optimism and thus extend life. These include practices such as meditation and a variety of psychotherapy programs.

They also surmised that optimism is important after they analyzed data from the Nurses’ Health Study, a study which focused on women, and a Veteran Affairs Normative Aging Study which focused on men.

The women in the study were from 58 to 86 years old with an average age of 70 when they had their health habits and overall health and optimistic outlook first assessed. They were then followed for 10 years.

The men in the study were from 41 to 90 years old with an average age of 62 when they were given a similar assessment and a physical examination in 1986. They were then followed for 30 years.

At the conclusion of the 2 tracking periods, the research team discovered for both women and men the findings were both roughly the same. The individuals that were more optimistic had the greater chances for living longer and also a greater chance for reaching the exceptional age.

However, the results don’t necessarily mean that the more pessimistic a person is the more likely they are doomed for a shorter life. The team only found an association as opposed to a cause and effect link. The association between exceptional longevity and optimism was independent of depression. This suggests that optimism is more than simply the absence of depression. Even those who struggle with depression might work longevity wonders even with a little optimism

There are variety of reasons why optimism can breed longevity. Generally, optimistic people experience less stress since they don’t typically dwell on negatives. They also can feel more empowered to beat hurdles and are less likely to give up. And they will bounce back more quickly from setbacks and problems. Stress wreaks havoc on our bodies and is a killer.

Optimistic people are more likely to take good care of themselves, have an easier time keeping and making friends which is a well studied source of longevity and health. They are less likely to experience feelings of hopelessness and depression which are linked to higher rates of disease and poorer health.

The team acknowledged that access to good food, education and money and then also genetics can have a big impact on longevity. Unlike good genes however, gratitude and optimism and be learned!

To view the original scientific study click below

Optimism is associated with exceptional longevity in 2 epidemiologic cohorts of men and women.

Help for Lower Back Pain

A new study has shown that self administered acupressure can improve fatigue and pain symptoms in people who experience chronic lower back pain. This traditional Chinese medicine technique may be a better treatment than medication which can have serious side effects and can lead to addiction and abuse.

The study conducted at the Michigan Medicine, University of Michigan, included 67 participants who all had chronic low back pain. There were placed in one of 3 different groups. The three groups included usual care, stimulating acupressure and relaxing acupressure.

Stimulating acupressure is directed towards fatigue reduction and relaxing acupressure is directed towards reducing insomnia.

The participants in the two acupressure groups had been trained to administer acupressure at certain points on their body. They spent between 27 to 30 minutes daily over six weeks performing their specific technique.

The participants who were placed in the usual care group were instructed to continue the treatments they were currently receiving to manage their fatigue and back pain from their health or medical provider.

When results were compared to the usual care group, the researchers found that those participants who performed stimulating acupressure experienced both fatigue and pain improvement. The participants who performed the relaxing acupressure indicated their pain had shown improvement after the six week period. They did not find any differences in the groups in regards to disability or sleep quality after the trial period.

Chronic pain can be difficult to manage, and people who experience this pain tend to experience other symptoms such as sleep disturbances, depression and fatigue. The study highlights the benefits from a non pharmacological treatment plan that patients can perform very easily on their own and result in positive pain management.

Larger studies are needed, however acupressure could be a useful strategy for pain management. It is low cost, low risk and easy to self administer. For now one can find several books with specific instructions for this type of technique by doing a search on on Amazon.com for accupressure books.

The team recommends additional studies into the different varieties of acupressure and how some of these techniques could specifically be targeted to people based on their symptoms.

To view the original scientific study click below

Self-Administered Acupressure for Chronic Low Back Pain: A Randomized Controlled Pilot Trial.

Reduce Anxiety with Matcha Tea

Adding Matcha Green Tea to your daily diet may improve your health and also help reduce anxiety. Experiments have shown that Matcha Tea’s anxiolytic effects happen because of the activation of dopamine D1 receptors and other serotonin receptors.

Japanese Matcha Tea has been growing in popularity around the world. This particular tea has a long history for its various medicinal purposes. The new study offers scientific evidence to support the benefits.

Recently a group of Japanese researchers from Kumamoto University have shown that anxiety in mice can be reduced after they have consumed Matcha extract or powder. The calming effects of the tea seem to be due to mechanisms which activate dopamine D1 receptors and serotonin 5-HT1A. These are both closely related to anxious behavior.

Matcha is a finely ground powder which is produced from the new leaves of shade grown Camellia sinensis green tea bushes. Not only the tea but also its food flavoring are enjoyed throughout the world. In Japan some of the historical medicinal uses for the tea include helping people relax, treatment of skin conditions and preventing obesity.

The research team set out to determine the tea’s various beneficial effects. They used the “elevated plus maze” test which is an elevated, plus shaped, narrow platform that has two walled arms which provide safety for the test subjects which are typically mice. This test is used as an anxiety test for the mice with the idea that animals which experience higher anxiety will spend more of their time in the safer walled off areas.

Researchers found that when using this test the anxiety of the mice was reduced after they consumed Matcha extract or powder. Additionally when the anxiolytic activity of a variety of Matcha extracts were elevated, an even stronger effect was discovered with an extract derived using 80% ethanol in comparison to an extract which was derived from just hot water. This means that a poorly water soluble Matcha component will have stronger anxiolytic effects than a component that is more water soluble.

A behavioral pharmacological analysis revealed that Matcha and Matcha extracts are able to reduce anxiety through activation of dopamine D1 and serotonin 5-HT1A receptors. Further epidemiological research is necessary, however the results of the current study show that Matcha may be very beneficial to the human body.

To view the original scientific study click below

Anxiolytic activities of Matcha tea powder, extracts, and fractions in mice: Contribution of dopamine D1 receptor- and serotonin 5-HT1A receptor-mediated mechanisms.