We've updated our Privacy Policy to make it clearer how we use your personal data.

We use cookies to provide you with a better experience. You can read our Cookie Policy here.

Advertisement
Two Clinically-approved Antibiotics Eliminate Senescent Cells Associated with Ageing
News

2 Clinically-approved Antibiotics Destroy Senescent Cells

Two Clinically-approved Antibiotics Eliminate Senescent Cells Associated with Ageing
News

2 Clinically-approved Antibiotics Destroy Senescent Cells

Normal cells of human connective tissue in culture. At a magnification of 500x, the cells were illuminated by darkfield amplified contrast technique. Image credit: National Cancer Institute
Read time:
 

Want a FREE PDF version of This News Story?

Complete the form below and we will email you a PDF version of "Two Clinically-approved Antibiotics Eliminate Senescent Cells Associated with Ageing"

First Name*
Last Name*
Email Address*
Country*
Company Type*
Job Function*
Would you like to receive further email communication from Technology Networks?

Technology Networks Ltd. needs the contact information you provide to us to contact you about our products and services. You may unsubscribe from these communications at any time. For information on how to unsubscribe, as well as our privacy practices and commitment to protecting your privacy, check out our Privacy Policy

Antibiotics have emerged as potentially lifespan-enhancing drugs, according to the results of new research carried out in the UK.

Genetic experiments that eliminate “senescent” cells – older cells, which lose the ability to divide – have already been proven to alleviate age-related dysfunction in modern organisms.

Now, scientists have shown for the first time that an FDA-approved antibiotic – Azithromycin – can effectively target and eliminate senescent cells in culture.

Publishing in the journal Aging-US, a team from the University of Salford’s Translational Medicine Laboratories compared the effects of a panel of FDA-approved drugs, on i) normal cells and ii) senescent cells, derived from human skin and lungs.

At a single low-dosage, Azithromycin was shown to effectively kill and eliminate the senescent cells, with an efficiency of 97%. 

Moreover, the normal healthy cells thrived in the presence of Azithromycin.

“It was an astonishing result, and one that got us thinking about the implications for treating or preventing a variety of ageing-associated diseases,” said Professor Michael P. Lisanti, the research lead.

“Azithromycin is a relatively mild antibiotic that has been proven to extend lifespan in cystic fibrosis patients by several years.



Cystic Fibrosis

“Originally, the thinking was that Azithromycin is killing harmful bacteria in cystic fibrosis patients – but our tests now shed a new light on what might be actually going on.

“Our new interpretation is that the antibiotic is probably eliminating the “inflammatory” fibroblasts, in other words, the senescent cells that are normally associated with ageing.

“If that is the case, then we may have unearthed a very inexpensive and readily available method of eliminating ageing cells that are toxic to the body.”

Senescent cells are thought to be the “root cause” for many ageing-associated diseases, such as cancer,heart disease, diabetes and dementia, among others.”

Healthy cells boosted

The Salford team members say that the antibiotic selectively targets senescent ageing cells, by altering their metabolic properties, forcing them to undergo cell death. Such a drug is said to be “senolytic”, as it lyses or destroys senescent cells.

The team also found a second related antibiotic, Roxithromycin, which also depletes senescent cells in a similar way, but with less selectivity.

“If we consider our results and then we also consider what results have been achieved in clinical trials with cystic fibrosis patients, we are probably looking at the same mechanism(s),whereby antibiotics are removing inflammatory senescent cells and boosting healthy ones.

“Undoubtedly, our results have significant implications for potentially alleviating or reversing tissue dysfunction and slowing the development of many ageing-associated diseases,”explains Professor Federica Sotgia, a co-lead of this study.

This article has been republished from materials provided by the University of Salford. Note: material may have been edited for length and content. For further information, please contact the cited source.

Reference:

Ozsvari, B., Nuttall, J. R., Sotgia, F., & Lisanti, M. P. (2018). Azithromycin and Roxithromycin define a new family of “senolytic” drugs that target senescent human fibroblasts. Aging. doi:10.18632/aging.101633

Advertisement