Longevity briefs provides a short summary of a novel research that caught the attention of our Oxford researchers due, to its potential to improve our health, wellbeing, and longevity.
Why is this research important: The Klotho gene codes for the Klotho protein, which is found predominantly in the brain and the kidney. Klotho is notorious for being one of the most important genes in the aging process that has been discovered so far. It has been associated with protecting against many age-related conditions, including Alzheimer’s, cardiovascular disease, cancer, chronic kidney disease and it has even been strongly linked to intelligence. This makes it a very interesting therapeutic target.
What did the researchers do: A researcher team based at Boston University’s school of medicine, aimed to find out whether they can increase the levels of Klotho in brain and kidney cells using a CRISPR complex. CRISPR is a gene editing tool which has revolutionised the accuracy, speed and ease of manipulating genetic information.
Key takeaway(s) from this research: Using the CRISPR technology, the team discovered two genetic components which they can control to successfully increase the levels of Klotho within human cells. These findings act as a promising foundation for Klotho gene therapy as a potential treatment against aging.