Rapamycin and aging

It’s no secret that many medications have multiple purposes. Sometimes, benefits that were not originally apparent are discovered later on.  Rapamycin was formulated with other medical uses in mind. However, it was found to have fantastic benefits when it comes to anti aging benefits.

RAPAMYCIN

Soil from the Easter Islands was found to somehow prevent the local inhabitants from getting Botulism and was collected and studied years later.  Bacteria specific to the Easter Islands were found in the soil and correlated to the protective effect of the soil.  Initially, it was used as an anti-fungal medication and later on as an immunosuppressant for transplant patients to prevent kidney rejection.  On further research, Rapamycin was observed to notably increase the lifespan of mice, which, of course, led scientists to ask the question: can Rapamycin increase the lifespan of humans?

While there are ongoing studies about the use of Rapamycin for anti aging, the early indicators are promising.  Mice showed a “reversal” of aging in their appearance and level of functioning, with some “elderly” female mice regaining the ability to become pregnant.

Early studies have shown that Rapamycin might be linked to the prevention of age related:

  • Obesity
  • Cancer
  • Diabetes
  • Neurological conditions

So how does Rapamycin work? Here are some of the things that have been shown in recent studies.

Rapamycin and Stress Resistance

The Rapamycin medication inhibits the Mammalian Target of Rapamycin Complex 1 (mTORC1). This compound is important for regulating metabolism and growth in a cell. However, when a medication like Rapamycin inhibits this activity, there is less signaling for growth. The focus instead shifts to stress resistance, a key for anti aging efforts.

Rapamycin and Senescent Cells

Taking Rapamycin for anti aging could lead to significant longevity. Inhibiting mTOR tricks the body into believing it is in a state of calorie deprivation. When this occurs, changes begin to take place at the cellular level. Cellular workers begin consuming the oldest and weakest cell parts (especially parts of senescent cells). The body has moved away from a “growth” phase that creates more senescent cells and promotes aging. Instead, it has entered a “repair” phase, renewing what it can and getting rid of what it cannot fix.

This implies that Rapamycin provides the body with the benefits of fasting without requiring a person to fast.

Senescent cells are cells that don’t divide. They are one of the “Hallmarks of Aging.” Their stagnancy is believed to spur aging or even drive cancer. Removing senescent cells can, in theory, slow aging.

Rapamycin and Immunity

Rapamycin is often used in organ transplant patients to prevent organ rejection. However, early studies have shown that very low doses of Rapamycin can increase immunity in elderly patients. This would directly contradict the low immunity associated with the aging process.

Rapamycin and Cardiac Problems

This drug is still in the early stages of testing for aging in humans. However, it is promising that dogs showed signs of younger hearts and fewer age related cardiac issues after taking Rapamycin.

Rapamycin and Aging Skin

For eight months, trial participants applied Rapamycin topically to the back of the hands. The skin of trial participants was then tested. Their skin contained more collagen (the structural part of the skin that prevents wrinkles) and less of the p16 protein (a measure of cell senescence).

Rapamycin Side Effects

Rapamycin is a promising player in the anti aging space. However, it is important to note that Rapamycin can have side-effects when used at the immunosuppressive dosage.  Even though the doses used for anti aging are significantly lower, some side-effects could occur. Dosage and use of Rapamycin as a treatment for aging should be discussed with your doctor.

Rapamycin for Anti Aging:
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC681461 

For the anti-role that other repurposed medications have, click here. 

What to expect

During the initial meeting Dr. Sorina will evaluate your current health condition and help you set goals for the treatment.  You will be educated on the use and possible side-effects of Rapamycin  and then you will receive a prescription.  Ongoing evaluation with visits at 3 months intervals are imperative for safe treatment.