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A Rat… from the Village of Long Life?

A Rat… from the Village of Long Life?

In 2010 ABC News Reporter’s visited the village of Yuzurihara, the ‘village of long life’, where residents live 10% longer than the average US normal lifespan, due to their diets being rich in Hyaluronic Acid and now 3 years on in 2013 it has been discovered that naked mole rats, rodents rich in high molecular weight Hyaluronan, also enjoy longevity in their little lives.

There is ten times the number of residents in the village of Yuzurihara living beyond the age of 85 and the older villagers have smooth skin, flexible joints and thick hair with few of them needing reading glasses.

A naked mole rat

The naked mole rat’s life longevity resembles that of those living in Yuzurihara”: it lives to age 30 or more!

They found that the animal’s tissues were rich in high molecular weight hyaluronan (HMW-HA), a gooey sugar that is involved in tissue repair. The researchers think the substance gives the naked mole-rat its distinctive, elastic “baggy” skin, which it needs to squeeze through underground tunnels.

The naked mole rat certainly isn’t going to win any beauty contests, but these curious creatures have long interested scientists because of their exceptionally lengthy life spans and maybe, the use of HMW HA in humans will have profound benefits to us in the future?

Similar versions of the substance are licensed to relieve pain in arthritis, are used as cosmetic fillers to treat wrinkles and are also found in skin creams, say the researchers.

This is proving to be fascinating that a natural substance like HMW-HA can promote longevity.

Link to BBC news article:

Notes to Editors
For media information contact:
Wendy Atkinson

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