A groundbreaking study, recently published in Nature Aging, has revealed an exciting development in the field of longevity research. Injecting aging monkeys with a protein known as klotho has shown remarkable improvements in their cognitive function. (1) These findings could potentially pave the way for new treatments targeting neurodegenerative diseases while offering the key to unlocking the fountain of youth for the mind.
Klotho, named after the Greek goddess Clotho, symbolizes the spinner of the thread of life. It is a naturally occurring protein that is present in the body and tends to decline as we age. In individuals with higher levels of this protein, it has been found to correlate with longer lifespans. Among the many actions Klotho supports in the body, it suppresses both oxidative stress and cellular senescence-associated inflammation, is cardio and neuroprotective, and functions as a brain-immune system interface to help aid in intracellular communication and efficiency for enhanced overall brain and body health (2).
In the rapidly growing longevity industry, the name of the game is to identify the targets that can help you live longer better. This recent study has the life-extending protein Klotho making headlines.
Previous research conducted on mice demonstrated that klotho injections not only extend their lifespan but also enhance synaptic plasticity—the brain’s ability to control communication between neurons at synapses.
The current study, conducted on rhesus macaques, focused on assessing the cognitive abilities of aged monkeys before and after a single injection of klotho. To evaluate their spatial memory, the researchers designed a behavioral experiment where the monkeys had to recall the location of a hidden treat. This test mirrors the challenges we face in everyday life, such as remembering where we parked our car or recalling a sequence of numbers after hearing it.
The results were astonishing. Monkeys who received the klotho injection demonstrated significant improvement in the memory tests. Prior to the injections, they accurately identified the correct wells around 45% of the time. However, after the injection, their success rate increased to approximately 60%. This remarkable improvement in spatial memory persisted for at least two weeks. Notably, the effective doses of klotho used in this study were relatively low compared to previous experiments on mice. This discovery adds a layer of complexity to the findings and suggests a more nuanced mode of action for the protein.
Despite these promising results, the exact mechanism by which klotho injections enhance cognition and their lasting effect remains unclear. Klotho itself cannot cross the blood-brain barrier, so researchers are eager to uncover the intermediates involved in this process. While the precise details are yet to be unraveled, this study undoubtedly instills hope. The researchers are now eagerly advocating for human clinical trials to further explore the potential benefits of klotho.
The great news is you don’t have to wait for an injection of this protein. There are several lifestyle solutions established in the research that are shown to increase this longevity protein with mor on the way!
Exercise>>> In a meta-analysis that investigated the effects of exercise training on S-Klotho levels, 12 studies were reviewed, comprising 621 participants with age ranging from 30 to 65 years old. It was found that Klotho concentration increased significantly ranging from 8.39 to 88.51% done 2-5 xs a week for 12 weeks consistently. The training included days of only resistance training, aerobic training and a combination of both. (3)
Nutrition>>>In another study it was found that consuming a high protein lower carbohydrate diet increases the expression of Klotho and raises BDNF levels in the brain for increased neuroprotective qualities. (4)
Experts in the field emphasize the need for additional research to address the unanswered questions surrounding klotho’s mode of action and its clinical potential.
Gøril Rolfseng Grøntvedt, a neurologist at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology, previously discovered that individuals with higher natural levels of klotho tend to experience less cognitive impairment in Alzheimer’s disease. This observation raises the possibility that increasing klotho levels could have beneficial effects. Therefore, understanding the intricate workings of this protein holds crucial importance in harnessing its full potential for therapeutic interventions.
As we continue to delve into the depths of longevity research, these exciting findings shed light on the immense possibilities that lie ahead.
Here at the human longevity institute, we are dedicated to bridging cutting-edge science and technology with ancient practices and principles for modern living lifestyle solutions. It would seem that science is making it possible to enhance this longevity protein as new delivery systems come to market. And yet, the solution already exists within YOU. By moving more and eating nutrient-dense whole foods you can add years to your life and life to your years.
While there is still much to uncover, this study marks a significant step forward in our journey toward unlocking the secrets of a longer and healthier life.
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- Castner, S. A. et al. Nature Aging https://doi.org/10.1038/s43587-023-00441-x (2023).
- Corrêa, H.d., Raab, A.T.O., Araújo, T.M. et al. A systematic review and meta-analysis demonstrating Klotho as an emerging exerkine. Sci Rep 12, 17587 (2022). https://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-022-22123-1
- Shafie, A., Rahimi, A.M., Ahmadi, I. et al. High-protein and low-calorie diets improved the anti-aging Klotho protein in the rats’ brain: the toxic role of high-fat diet. Nutr Metab (Lond) 17, 86 (2020). https://doi.org/10.1186/s12986-020-00508-1
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