‘Old Cells to Young Cells’ Korean KAIST researchers uncovered the secret of rejuvenation

Researchers in Korea have developed a source technology for reverse aging that can’rejuvenate’ old cells into young cells.

The Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (KAIST) announced on the 26th that the research team of Professor Gwang-Hyun Cho in the Department of Bio and Brain Engineering has developed an early source technology for reverse aging to return aged human dermal fibroblasts to normal young cells.

The research team developed a program that implements a computer-implemented cellular aging signaling network of human dermal fibroblasts and simulated them to find the key factors necessary to return old cells to young cells. In addition, by controlling this key factor, it has established a reverse aging technology that increases the synthesis of reduced collagen in aged skin tissues and restores the regenerative ability to show the characteristics of young skin tissues. The research team’s thesis was published in the International Journal (PNAS).

KAIST Professor Gwang-Hyun Cho’s research team confirmed the’rejuvenation effect’ by inhibiting the expression of PDK1 and then checking the cell aging markers of aged human dermal fibroblasts.

Currently, the method that has been mainly studied as a rejuvenation strategy is to dedifferentiate already differentiated cells by temporarily expressing the’OSKM transcription factor’ by Professor Shinya Yamanaka of Kyoto University in Japan and California State University in the United States, a 2012 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine. In this way, senescent cells return to a younger state. However, this technology has a limitation in that side effects that cause cancer such as tumor formation occur.

Prof. Kwang-Hyun Cho’s research team is a key regulator that returns aged human dermal fibroblasts to young cells.’mTOR’ (mTOR), which regulates protein synthesis and cell growth, and’N, which is involved in the production of immune substance cytokines. We found the upper regulatory factor’PDK1′ (PDK1) that simultaneously controls F-KB’ (NF-kB).

Professor Kwang-Hyun Cho, KAIST

Professor Kwang-Hyun Cho, KAIST

The research team proved that it is possible to rejuvenate senescent cells by inhibiting PDK1 through molecular cell experiments and aging artificial skin models. When PDK1 was suppressed in aged human dermal fibroblasts, cell aging markers disappeared, and the phenomenon of functioning as normal cells responding appropriately to the surrounding environment was confirmed.

Based on the results of this research, Amorepacific Research Institute of Technology, which has collaborated with the research team, is developing a cosmetic product that improves aging skin wrinkles by extracting the PDK1 inhibitory ingredient from camellia extract, KAIST said.

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