A commonly used drug, employed in treatment of certain bowel
disorders, and based on sulphur, has been shown to markedly
increase health, and to have a rejuvenating effect on humans and
animals. Sulfadiazine (salazopirin in Europe) is almost non-toxic,
only producing side-effects in about one person in a thousand,
and has been shown in human geriatric patients to improve
hearing, vision, sexual function, general state of tissues and
sense of well-being. There is, according to John Mann (Secrets of
Life Extension, Harbor, 1980) only limited evidence of actual life
extension, though, when used in animal studies, and the drug
probably allowed the animals to live longer than animals not
treated, rather than actually extending their natural life spans.
Swiss doctors have for over half a century been promoting the use of live cell injections in order to reverse the ageing process. Cellular therapy is now commonplace throughout Europe. It involves cells from embryonic animals (commonly sheep) being injected intramuscularly after being mixed in a saline solution. Additionally, organs and glands of various animals are injected
for specific effects. The general idea is that the genetic material (DNA and RNA) from these relatively uncontaminated creatures will transfer to the cells of the recipient helping them to function more normally as they age. Unlike cells from adult animals, the relatively immature immune systems of the embryos results in the cells not being rejected as foreign protein, it is thought. There are well substantiated claims for a rejuvenating effect from such methods, although no claims of actual life extension.
A logical development of this idea is gaining support, that cells should be taken from young people and stored until later in their life, when they could be injected in this way, acting as a boost to regeneration and immune functions. While there is little doubt that people receiving cell therapy seem to feel better, have better memory and general function, and often look much younger than previously, this does not constitute life extension.
Nucleic acid therapy
Nucleic acids (RNA and DNA), often derived from yeasts and sometimes from animal sources, are being used in an attempt to encourage life extension. This method has been promoted in the US for many years by Dr Benjamin Frank (Dr Frank's No Aging Diet, B. Frank and P. Miele, Dell, New York, 1976) with apparent success. It is claimed that in animal studies a 30 to 50 per cent increase in life span has been achieved.
Dr Frank says: 'RNA from foods and supplements, when combined with metabolically associated B vitamins, minerals, amino acids and sugars, will enter the cell and in so doing will bring about normal enzyme synthesis and activation' He believes that nucleic acid therapy encourages the production of ATP (adenosine triphosphate), which can be synthesized from nucleic acid, and therefore lead to more efficient cell function, and indeed regeneration. Food sources of nucleic acids are brewer's yeast, sardines, anchovies, mackerel, lentils and most beans, chick peas, animal liver, and oysters.
Supplementation with health store purchased DNA/RNA tablets is suggested by Dr Frank in doses of 100 to 200 milligrams daily. Benefits, which should emerge within two months on the programme, he says, include fewer wrinkles, improved color, and improved strength and well-being.