Young Blood Reverses Aging in Mice

July 13, 2014

Unlocking Word Meanings

Read the following words/expressions found in today’s article. 

1. reverse /rɪˈvɜrs/ (v.) – to oppose something
Example: Old people should eat healthily to reverse high mortality rate.

2. rejuvenate /rɪˈdʒu vəˌneɪt/ (v.) – to return to the original condition
Example: She uses a lot of products to rejuvenate her skin.

3. approach /əˈproʊtʃ/ (n.) – means or way
Example: A teacher uses different approaches to teach students.

4. link /lɪŋk/ (v.) – to connect to something
Example: Old age is often linked to different kinds of diseases.

5. ability /əˈbɪl ɪ ti/ (n.) – capacity to do something
Example: Her old age did not affect her dancing ability.


Read the text below.
Studies published in Science and Nature Medicine revealed that young blood may help reverse the effects of aging.

Researchers found that the blood of young mice may rejuvenate the brain, muscles, and other organs of older mice.

The study conducted by Tony Wyss-Coray of Stanford University and Saul Villeda of the University of California did two approaches to expose the old mice to young blood. The first method was the injection of plasma from the young mice to the old mice. The second method was the surgical connection of a young mouse’s circulatory system to that of an old one. Researchers then tested how well the species would do in learning and memory tasks.

The old mice exposed to young blood were able to pass the tests. Researchers also found that the brain structure of the treated mice became similar with that of a three-month old mouse. According to Villeda, the effect can be linked to CREB – a protein that regulates the formation of memories in the brain. The plasma makes the CREB active, which results in genes allowing neural connections.

Another study conducted by Lee Rubin of Harvard University and his colleagues suggested that young blood can revive the brains and muscles of older mice. Rubin and his team found that older mice that received young blood exhibited the same smelling ability like the younger ones.

The researchers hope that this study could also be conducted on humans, which could eventually lead to treatments of conditions brought by old age.

Viewpoint Discussion

Enjoy a discussion with your tutor.  

Discussion A

·         Do you think the findings of the studies mentioned in the article could also apply to humans? Why or why not?
·         If given the chance, would you use the future anti-aging treatment that scientists may discover? Why or why not?

Discussion B

·         What are the effects of old age?
·         What would you do to keep an active life even at old age?

July 13, 2014