Aging

TRIIM trial to target thymus

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Science  22 Nov 2019:
Vol. 366, Issue 6468, pp. 967-968
DOI: 10.1126/science.366.6468.967-d

Thanks to the demographic transition, aging human bodies are an increasing liability for health and social systems. The risk of many age-related diseases could be reduced by thymus regeneration to improve immunological protection. In the thymus regeneration, immunorestoration, and insulin mitigation (TRIIM) trial, Fahy et al. developed a method to promote thymus function and reverse immunosenescence aging markers in nine men aged 51 to 65 years. The men were treated with recombinant human growth hormone as well as two drugs (dehydroepiandrosterone and metformin) that are used to prevent hyperinsulinemia and the diabetogenic effects of growth hormone. Effects of treatment were measured on immune cells, cytokines, and epigenetic clocks, which monitor changes in DNA methylation and indicate biological age (as distinct from chronological age). Immunological measures improved in the treated men, and epigenetic age regressed by 1.5 years after 1 year of treatment. Larger studies are required to verify the findings.

Aging Cell 18, e13028 (2019).

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