Hat tip to Kelly Z. for alerting me that recent Stanford alumn (and current USCF Faculty Fellow) Saul Villeda has been enjoying some recent press coverage. For those of you unfamiliar with Saul's thesis work, I'm going to lift the description of Saul's research interests straight from the his lab website:
Our lab is interested in understanding what drives regenerative and cognitive impairments in the aging brain, and moreover how the effects of aging can be reversed in the old brain. Our lab is focused on three areas. First, we are looking at how immune-related changes in old blood contribute to impairments in neural stem cell function and associated cognitive functions. Second, we are looking at the contribution of the innate immune system to age-related impairments in synaptic plasticity and cognitive function. Third, we are looking at how exposure to young blood rejuvenates neural stem cell function, synaptic plasticity and cognitive function in the old brain. Ultimately, our goal is to elucidate cellular and molecular mechanisms that promote brain rejuvenation as a means by which to combat age-related neurodegeneration and cognitive dysfunction. (Villeda lab website)
And now, on to the press coverage of Saul's research, which he recently presented at the Society for Neuroscience Conference.
- The good: Coverage by the Guardian, entitled: "Young blood can reverse some effects of ageing, study finds"
- The hilarious: Coverage by Jezebel, entitled: "Turns Out, Baby Blood Might Be the Actual Fountain of Youth"
Saul: I think I speak for the entire Stanford Neuro student community, when I saw congratulations on your new fame. We're so proud. And amused. But mostly pretty darn proud.
Final note: those curious for more details may want to peruse Saul's Nature paper (found online here, although pay-wall warning).
Final, final note: The Villeda lab is looking for folks to join their research group! Qualified individuals should head on over to the Villeda lab website for contact details.
Update 10/22/12: The fame, it spreads. I09 picks up the story from the Guardian.