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gusano

 

Una serie de pruebas realizadas en el nematodo C. Elegans, una especia de ‘gusano’, de apenas un milímetro de longitud, mostró que sus células adultas comienzan a envejecer de manera abrupta cuando alcanza la madurez reproductiva. El interruptor genético comienza a ‘apagar’ los mecanismos de protección de estrés celular que protegen las células dentro del cuerpo.

El hallazgo puede considerarse significativo porque los seres humanos tienen el mismo interruptor genético, lo que probablemente significa que puede ser posible retrasar el envejecimiento. El hallazgo tiene impactados a la comunidad científica estadounidense.

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“Nuestros hallazgos sugieren que debe haber una manera de revertir este interruptor genético y proteger nuestras células del envejecimiento mediante el aumento de su capacidad para resistir el estrés”, dice el profesor de Biociencias Moleculares, Richard Morimoto, el autor principal del estudio.

Morimoto, director del Instituto de Investigación Biomédica de la Universidad Weinberg de Artes y Ciencias en Northwestern (EE.UU.), y su equipo revelaron que son las células madre de línea germinal, responsables de la fabricación de óvulos y espermatozoides, las que controlan el interruptor genético.

“Los C. Elegans nos mostraron que el envejecimiento no es un proceso continuo de diversos eventos, como se pensaba antes. (…) Descubrimos un interruptor que es muy preciso para el envejecimiento”, agregó el científico.

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