Researchers from Stanford University have finally discovered a use for all that young blood you've got lying around (just as it was about to turn, thank God): inject it into your bloodstream to become young and beautiful again. Or, anyway, slightly better at memory tasks.
A team of researchers led by scientist Saul Villeda found that old mice (18 months, near the end of their life span) given infusions of blood from younger mice (2 months, before they had even learned to talk) not only performed better at memory tasks than other old mice—they even started to re-grow connections in their brain that had begun to disappear as a result of aging.
A previous study led by Villeda had already confirmed the opposite affect: young, sexy mice given transfusions of blood from old mice showed signs of premature aging in their brains. A powerful tool in old people's Angry War Against Youth.
To test the mice's memory after they were given their powerful youth elixir (small amounts of blood plasma doled out over the course of a month), researchers put the rodents into a water maze.
In order to get out of the maze, the mice were required to find, and then remember, the location of a hidden platform. Older mice with old-ass blood made several errors and wrong turns in their attempts to find the platform. Older mice with young blood, however, performed almost as well as their young counterparts. They were also much less likely to accidentally post a private message on their own Facebook wall and fall asleep before SNL ended.
But before you go out and start injecting yourself with children's blood so you can out-perform mice at memory tasks, take note: the finding is still a long way from being applied to humans. Villeda is hopeful, though, that eventually a similar blood transfusion technique could one day be used to help prevent negative affects of aging on the brain in humans – and maybe even prevent Alzheimer's.
"Do I think that giving young blood could have an effect on a human? I'm thinking more and more that it might. I did not, for sure, three years ago."
No word on whether bathing in or drinking blood has any effect on slowing the aging process, so just assume the answer is "Yes, they slow it" and continue doing those things as you normally would.
The study has not yet been published.
[Guardian // Image via Shutterstock]