A scientist recently revealed that it is possible to grow biologically younger. Ageing expert Aubrey de Grey also said one day humans won't die from old age but only as a result of accidents.
Briton Aubrey de Grey is the chief science officer and co-founder of the SENS Research Foundation in Mountain View in California. His company is packed with bioscientists looking for the fountain of youth.
"The risk of death will remain the risk of death from causes other than ageing — like being hit by a truck," de Grey told CBS SF Bay Area.
"We don't know how soon we're going to defeat ageing. We should be able to keep people truly in a youthful state of health, no matter how long they live and that means the risk of death will not rise," he added.
In 2014, a study by researchers at Stanford University led by neuroscientist Tony Wyss-Coray showed that infusions of blood from young mice reversed cognitive and neurological impairments in old rodents.
Since mice are biologically similar to humans, the researchers believed a similar technique could one day benefit humans as well.
And now, several startups are looking at replicating it in humans by using blood and its components — specifically the pale yellow fluid in the blood called plasma. "Plasma transfusions are a big hot property right now," said de Grey.
Biotech Company Alkahest in San Carlos was astonished after they analysed plasma samples donated by the young and the old. "We have actually know for the first time discovered that there are hundreds of proteins that change with ageing," explained CEO and Chairman Karoly Nicolich.
Sakura Minami, who was involved in the study, said some of the factors that give young blood its power have now been identified – but the team will not be revealing them yet.
Researchers are hopeful that these findings will not only help them develop anti-ageing treatments but also help people with neurological diseases.
A Stanford University study recently found that the so-called "vampire transfusions" may help people with dementia. They studied 18 people with Alzheimer's disease, after giving the blood plasma of 18-30-year-olds.
They reportedly regained the capacity to perform basic everyday tasks, such as making their own meals, paying bills and taking their medications.
Although it was an early-stage trial, it proved that such transfusions were safe and yielded surprising results.
The study's principal investigator, Dr Sharon Sha, said: "Our enthusiasm concerning these findings needs to be tempered by the fact that this was a small trial. But these results certainly warrant further study."