Weakening of muscles is characteristic of aging, often hampering physical activity of aged persons. A research conducted at the Karolinska Institutet in Sweden reveals that cell regeneration is impaired due to an abnormally high number of mutation in stem cells of muscles. This discovery is an important standpoint for developing medications that can prevent stem cell mutation to give stronger muscles to aged people. The researchers studied the mutation inside stem cells of muscles to understand the cause of muscle impairment after aging.
Analyzing Stem Cells of Aged Persons
It is an established biological fact that stem cells reduce as an individual’s age increases. Through this study, the researchers found over 1000 mutations in the stem cells of a 70-year old person. Furthermore, these mutations weren’t random but were concentrated in certain regions of the stem cell. The regions that were protected of mutation are the same regions that play a pivotal role in the survival of the muscle. However, the research also portrayed that this protection declines as individuals age, thus, stripping the cells of their capacity to repair their DNA. This is the main cause of weakening of muscles in aged individuals, and the researchers intend to use drug therapies to inhibit the cell malfunction.
Towards Developing Novel Therapies
The researchers are expected to use their findings to develop novel therapies that could control the weakening of the muscles. Furthermore, they also aim to find if the physical activity can also influence the mutation inside stem cells. It would be interesting to see the advancements in medical care of the geriatric population that ensues with this research.