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Wednesday, April 10, 2024

AI reveals chemicals that could stop aging in its tracks

The world’s getting a face-lift, and it’s not from a swanky Beverly Hills plastic surgeon. Nope, instead, it’s from the magic of artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning. Not only is this emerging tech shaking up industries across the board, it’s also stirring up a storm in the quest for youth.

Scientists are working round the clock, using AI as their magic wand in their relentless search for natural compounds that can slow down the aging process. Mother Nature, being the generous lady she is, has filled her pantry to the brim with potential compounds. However, identifying these compounds manually? We might as well try to catch a cellphone signal in the middle of the Sahara.

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AI: The digital knight in shining armor

Here’s where our digital knight in shining armor, AI, comes galloping in. Scientists used a machine learning model trained on mountains of data about known chemicals and their effects, along with so much more, to predict whether a compound could extend the life of a translucent worm that shares a similar metabolism to humans. Thanks to this information, this whiz kid machine learning model could eventually help predict which compounds might keep us looking like we’ve just taken a dip in the fountain of youth.

Results of the AI screening

After screening over 4,000 chemicals, the model identified 21 potential candidates, three of which – ginkgetin, periplocin and oleandrin – demonstrated the ability to remove deteriorating cells effectively. Among the three, oleandrin was found to be the most potent. These compounds are both from natural products found in traditional herbal medicines.

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The race to defy aging

Let’s hold our horses and take a breath before we start painting the town red. We’ve only just reached the starting line of this exciting race. These compounds, promising as they are, still need to pass the grueling tests of the real world and further research before we can start popping champagne corks and celebrating. Despite the journey ahead, we cannot underestimate the tremendous strides AI has already taken in this quest for natural anti-aging wonders. The potential for AI to speed up the search, cutting down what could have taken years to mere weeks or months – now that’s what I call a home run.

Yet that’s not all, folks. The fascinating journey of AI doesn’t end with unmasking Mother Nature’s anti-aging secrets. As it delves deeper, it’s bound to unearth even more exciting potentials that could turn our approach to health and wellness on its head.

AI digital symbol

The model was trained on data from the DrugAge database, which contains information on thousands of chemical structures that have been tested for lifespan extension in model organisms. (CyberGuy.com)

MORE: 5 DISTURBING EXAMPLES OF WHY AI IS NOT QUITE THERE

Kurt’s Key Takeaways

As we watch this digital revolution unfurl, one has to wonder – what’s next on the horizon? Could AI morph into our personal health adviser without killing us? Will it uncover more hidden gems in our everyday meals? 

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