According to a new research, the experiments on mice that were undertaken by a group of Swedish and Russian scientists have proved to be a breakthrough in the field of struggling against ageing. The research was focused on intracellular power stations – mitochondria that generate all power inside a cell. However, mitochondria generate some by-products as well, such as free radicals and reactive oxygen that contribute a lot to the ageing process.
Antioxidants can prevent the damage done by reactive oxygen forms and in this study the researchers used a synthetic antioxidant SkQ1 targeting mitochondria.
Results of the study have shown that SkQ1 in the drinking water consumed by the test mice slows down physical signs of their ageing process.
“This work is crucial from both theoretical and practical points of view. On the one hand, it demonstrates the key role of reactive oxygen forms produced in mitochondria in the process of mammals ageing. On the other hand – the study leads the way to the treatment of ageing with antioxidants that specifically target mitochondria,” — says Professor Vladimir Skulachev, a co-author of the study. Actually, it was he who purified the SkQ1 molecule.
The development of SkQ1-based human pharmaceutical product will be the next step. This drug will go through its clinical trials quickly, and if approved it will be marketed in two or three years.