Daily Archives: January 10, 2010

I May Live Forever !

This story is unlike any other on this blog. For one thing, I am not a medical researcher and have had very little exposure or interest in the medical sciences so I approached this subject from an engineer’s perspective and as an investigator that thinks outside the box. I did not and could not follow some of the intricate details of many of the hardcore medical research reports I read. I mostly jumped to the conclusions and stitched together the thoughts and ideas that made sense to me. In retelling it, I have quoted parts of the medical study for those of you that understand it and then provided a translation based on my own interpretation of the studies. This story is also different because, it may well change my life significantly because, when all my research ended, I began experimenting on myself and as a result, I may live forever. Here’s the whole story from the beginning….

Some time ago, I became interested in life extension and began reading about it, in all its forms. I’m old and getting older so this was something that directly applied to my life. My research began with the known and leading edge of the science of experimental and biomedical gerontology. I read about the actual biology of senescence – the process of aging and what it is that actually ages. I learned the role of telomeres in the cell cycle and how some cells are immortal (germ and keratinocyte stem cells). I also learned that the telomerase enzyme, present in every cell, could turn a mortal cell into an immortal cell by stopping the telomere clock (called the Hayflick Limit) that puts a limited duration on the length of the cells’ telemeres. I learned that stem cells exist in many forms and types and have a wide range of capabilities and effects.

The above is a one paragraph summary of a huge amount of study and research over a period of a year or more and included tons more detail about all aspects of the science and the current R&D taking place in labs all over the word. The aging populations of most of the world’s wealthier nations have increased the interest and the funding for such studies. One estimate is that more than 25 experimental biomedical gerontology research studies are concluded and published somewhere every month.

After a year of reading and study, my research into this subject reminded me of someone that has taken two weeks climbing up a mountain and then he looks up and realizes he has only moved up about 10% of the height of the mountain. I could see that there was an enormous amount of material to study and that I would never really be able to learn it all….but I wanted to reach beyond what was being done and see what else I could find so I changed direction in my studies.

I decided to think outside the box and try to jump directly into the areas of controversial medical research. To do this, I began by looking at history. I have been a student of history all my life. I love the subject. I also love to find that there is almost always some truth to ancient legends and myths. Everything from Noah’s Great flood to Atlantis to the Yeti have some basis in fact or in history that has been embellished over the years by countless retellings. If you look hard enough, you can find the tidbit of truth that started it all.

So I began to look for some connection in ancient myths and legends about immortality and life extension. I used my concept search engine called Plato to help me gather and collate and sift thru all these old stories. As you might guess there are thousands of such references. Stories of the Fountain of Youth, the source of life and the miracle of birth get all mixed up in thousands of references to various aspects of immortality and recovery of youth. To sift thru all this, I used my own designed concept search engine called Plato.

Plato is simply a search engine like Google or Bing but it uses a unique searching technique that I invented that combines a thesaurus search, advanced data mining techniques and pattern recognition with a powerful neural network that provides predictive modeling and computational EDA methods. These modules pass the search syntax back and forth in an iterative Monte Carlo statistical manner to quantify the relationship of the data it finds into applicable concepts without relying on simple key-word searches.

It doesn’t just research my key-word search syntax; it can search for a concept. A simple example is searching for “Houses in the Artic”. It will use a thesaurus lookup to find all substitutes for House and Artic. It will then extend its search into the culture in which House may be different in the context of the Artic so that House will relate to igloo, or tent or ice cave or snow burrow and Artic might include Antarctic, polar north or polar south or “above the artic circle”. It will then collate the findings into a list of the most logical and most well documented response to my original query.

Plato has been my research tool for more than a two decade and I have been enhancing its capabilities almost continuously for most of that time as new methods, software and algorithms become available. I often use commercially available software matched to ERP-style data exchanges or simple macros to interlink and connect the applications with my own coded algorithms. I recently added a module that does a new kind of pattern searching called NORA – non-obvious relationship analysis –, which finds links between facts, and data that would otherwise be missed. NORA can find links to references using nicknames, alternate spellings, foreign word substitutes, and data that is seemingly unrelated but uses nonintuitive and disambiguation algorithms. NORA is actually just the next logical and incremental advance from my original simple Bayesian classifier to my newer neural-net pattern recognition and k-nearest neighbor algorithm (KNN) to a more sophisticated combination of all of those methods to make NORA.

Using NORA, Plato often finds interrelationships that would never have occurred to me and then it documents, prioritizes and presents to me why it is important. Such searches are often done by mainframes and super computers but I don’t have all that so I have to rely on my own version of distributed processing in which I use my own bank of PC’s plus some others that I “borrow” by farming out in an N-Tier architecture of commercial, university and government mainframes and other PC’s. This is particularly used when searches can be performed independently and then the results can be collated and evaluated by my own computers.

As you might expect, when I turned Plato onto this study, it did its usual job of searching, often for more than 5 or 6 days and nights (using my six interlinked computers and 18 terabytes of HDD space plus all the other systems that I could make use of). Each search gave me new insights and allowed me to make the next search more specific and productive. When it was done, it found something very interesting……..apples.

It found that when you condense thousands of ancient myths and legends and folklore, apples come up an extraordinary number of times in relation to stories of immortality and anti-aging. Oh, and not just any apples. It seems that only Golden Delicious and Braeburn apples have the connection to most consistent life-giving affects. Obviously, I had to follow this new idea and read many of the stories and links that Plato had documented. Norse, Greek, Chinese, American Indian and Australian Aborigines mythology all have detailed references to stories that related apples to immortality. Such is the kind of links that simply cannot be a total coincidence. There has to be more to this then just a common fruit food.

This was enough to go on so I went back to the hard sciences of experimental and biomedical gerontology to see if there was any link to apples. I really got frustrated because for months, I found virtually no connection to apples and I was beginning to think I might have gone off in the wrong direction too far. It took more than a year and hundreds of searches that took months of dedicated processing time with Plato’s help – but I finally found it. It turns out the reason it took so long is that one of the critical research papers that made the connection was only published in November of 2009. That paper essentially was the keystone of the whole story and provided the final piece of the puzzle that made everything else work and make sense. Here is the connection but I have to give you some of the other findings so you can see the series of links that leads to apples.

First the hard science: Fibrocyte is a term used to identify inactive mesenchymal multipotent stem cells (MSC), that is, cells that can differentiate into a variety of cell types. The term “Fibrocyte” contrasts with the term “fibroblasts.” Fibroblasts are connective tissue cells characterized by synthesis of proteins of the fibrous matrix, particularly the collagens. When tissue is injured – which includes damaged, worn out, aged or destroyed –, the predominant mesenchymal cells (MSC), the fibroblasts, are able to repair or create new replacement tissues, cells or parts of cells. These fibroblasts MSC’s are derived from the Fibrocyte and from muscle cells and glands.

Recently, the term “Fibrocyte” has also been applied to a blood born cell able to leave the blood, enter tissue and become a fibroblast. As part of the more general topic of stem cell biology, a number of studies have shown that the blood contains marrow-derived cells that can differentiate into fibroblasts. These cells have been reported to express the hematopoietic cell surface markers, as well as collagen. These cells can migrate to wound sites, exhibiting a role in wound healing. There are several studies showing that Fibrocyte mediate wound healing and fibrotic tissue repair.

Time to translate; the above says that one form of stem cells is called a Fibrocyte, which can express (a genetics term meaning create or manifests) as a fibroblast, which is a powerful cell capable of healing or even creating other body cells or cell parts. Fibroblasts can be created from Fibrocyte and from muscle cells. A special form of fibroblasts has been recently found in blood and is called myo-fibroblasts (which just means blood-fibroblasts). Myo-fibroblasts appear to also be created by bone marrow and have been found to be critical to wound healing and tissue repair. Myofibroblasts are a blood-borne stem cell that can give rise to all the other blood cell types but as you will see, they can do more.

OK now let’s jump to another researcher that found that Myofibroblasts in the wound tissue are implicated in wound strengthening by extracellular collagen fiber deposition and then wound contraction by intracellular contraction and concomitant alignment of the collagen fibers by integrin mediated pulling on to the collagen bundles. It can contract by using muscle type actin-myosin complex, rich in a form of actin called alpha-smooth muscle actin. These cells are then capable of speeding wound repair by contracting the edges of the wound. More recently it has been shown that the production of fibroblasts can be enhanced with photobiomodulation.

The translation of the above is that Myofibroblasts exist almost everywhere in the body but not in large quantities. Under certain conditions, muscle tissues, bone marrow and other surfaces within the body can create Myofibroblasts. Since the Myofibroblasts moves within the blood, it can reach everywhere in the body but Fibrocyte and fibroblasts are confined to specific sites within the body.

Myofibroblasts are also a sort of universal repair kit for cells and organs that can strengthen the organs and cells down to the cell wall using collagen, actin and intracellular contraction along with constructive rebuilding using special fibers that re-enforce and rebuild cells and parts of cells.

Perhaps the most important finding is that photobiomodulation can cause the level of fibroblasts in the body to increase. Fibroblasts have a self-renewal capacity to maintain their own population at an approximately constant level within the body but under special conditions created by photobiomodulation, that population can be made to grow larger. Under certain light conditions, fibroblasts increase in the blood for many hours or days before returning to their preset but relatively low constant level.

Low-level laser therapy (LLLT, also known as photobiomodulation, cold laser therapy and laser biostimulation) has long been known as a medical and veterinary treatment, which uses low-level lasers or light-emitting diodes to stimulate or inhibit cellular function. This is a really hot topic in the medical community because of its implications to non-pharmacology and non-invasive healing. Clinical and laboratory research investigating optimal wavelengths, power densities, treatment duration and treatment intervals are being performed in dozens of labs all over the world and these labs are publishing numerous papers on the subject. Among these papers, I (and Plato) have found several studies that show that the density of fibroblast cells and phytochemicals increase significantly under the LLLT.

As a universal repair kit, it would be more desirable to have Myofibroblasts than fibroblasts because Myofibroblasts can move throughout the body and repair more other different kinds of cells. However, since fibroblasts are more abundant than Myofibroblasts and are continually being created by Fibrocyte, the stimulation of making more fibroblasts using a special form of light therapy is a major discovery. At issue is to now get the fibroblasts to create more Myofibroblasts.

It is a well-established fact that apples exhibit strong antioxidant and antiproliferative activities and that their major part of total antioxidant activity is from the combination of phytochemicals. Phytochemicals, including phenolics and flavonoids are the bioactive compounds in apples.

A remarkable finding was made in November 2009. While experimenting with the variables in LLLT treatments and measuring the production of stem cells, it was discovered by accident that apples significantly increased the conversion of fibroblasts cells into Myofibroblasts cells. Further research narrowed the effect to just two types of apples, showing that Golden Delicious and Braeburn apples had the best impact on the health and growth of new Myofibroblasts cells.

Further research has shown that this amazing apple effect on the morphology of the cells, which became larger and stronger in the presence of selected apples – shows nearly identical effects as those from Human Growth Hormone (HGH), which is meant to stimulate the growth of cells. This means that apples could be the missing piece of the puzzle for growth of stronger and more lasting cells and could possibly be substituted for HGH therapy.

The net effect of the LLLT on patients that also have a daily diet of at least one Golden Delicious or Braeburn apple is that there is a significant improvement in cell morphology (structure) and in the quantity of fibroblast cells and that those cells are converted into Myofibroblasts cells in significant quantities.

There is one more piece to the puzzle. Even though Myofibroblasts have this great healing and regenerative powers and can travel anywhere in the body in the blood, we need to direct that effect on the telomeres so that the repairs to that one aspect to the cell can allow the normal cell reproduction and renewal process to continue and not die out with age. To do that, we have to change to another line of scientific inquiry.

Regenerative Medicine is a field of study on how to combine cells, engineering cells, and develop suitable bio-chemical stimulation to improve or replace biological functions, tissues and physio-chemical functions. This is a new field of study that most often makes use of stem cells as the major construction and repair tool. By using stem cells or progenitor cells, they have developed methods to induce regeneration in biologically active molecules. The focus of this work has been on the use of the most concentrated and powerful stem cells from embryonic and umbilical cord blood primarily because they want the fastest and most effective response possible on large repairs – like rebuilding the spine or liver. Although Myofibroblasts are less versatile than the embryonic stem cells, they are also multipotent stem cells – meaning that they can repair or rebuild other cells.

Regenerative Medicine applies the stem cells directly to damaged areas and hopes that they will go to the damaged area and fix it. But this method will not work if the problem to be fixed is every cell in the body. Site-specific Injections won’t work so we have to rely on the body’s natural systems to deliver the stem cells where we want them. The only method to reach them all is by the blood and the only effective stem cell that travels effectively in the blood are the Myofibroblasts.

But even moving thru the blood will not automatically make the Myofibroblasts find and repair the telomeres. I had to find a way to specifically, make the Myofibroblasts address the specific repair of the telomeres. To do so, it must somehow be told where to look and what to fix. I found this is done with a method called telomere-targeting agents (TTA). TTA’s were developed to tag the telomeres of cancer cells and then use a small molecule called BIBR1532, which is a telomerase inhibitor to shorten the cancer cells telomeres, thus destroying the cancer. TTA has only rarely been used to identify a point of repair rather than a point to inhibit or destroy but the difference in the two methods is relatively minor.

So, up to this point, we know that Myofibroblasts are stem cells that possess the ability to rebuild, recreate and reproduce a variety of body cells. This capability is called multipotent progenitor cells (MPC), however, the most recent research has shown that certain specific light frequencies, pulse duration and repeat treatments when using LLLT in the presence of the essential elements of apples, has created not just multipotent stem cells but pluripotent stem cells (PSC). These are cells that can essentially become or repair any cell in the body. It would now appear that we have not yet perfected the transformation of all of the fibroblasts into pluripotent stem cells but many are converted. Many more are converted into MPC’s. Both PSC’s and MPC’s are then applied to rebuild, recreate and produce a variety of body cells through a process known as transdifferentiation. This is not just repair but wholesale recreation or replacement of damaged cells.

These MPC’s and PSC’s can give rise to other cell types that have already been terminally differentiated. In other words, these stem cells can rebuild, recreate and reproduce any other cells. By using the special tagging process called TTA, we can direct these stem cells to seek out and repair the telomeres of cells everywhere in the body.

The next big advance in my research was finding a research project funded by the National Institute of on Aging (NIA), which is a part of the National Institute of Health (NIH). What was odd about this study is that it was taking place at Fort Detrick in Frederick Maryland. This is somewhat unusual because Ft. Detrick is where the Dept of Defense does a lot of its classified and dangerous medical research. You would not normally think of aging as being in that group. It got more confusing when I discovered that the labs being used were a part of the National Interagency Confederation for Biological Research (NICBR). This implied that the program was funded across all of the government medical community and that they had enormous resources to pull from. It also spoke of how important this program was. As I looked into this group more out of curiosity than for content, I discovered that a senior director at the NICBR was an old buddy of mine from my days at DARPA and NRL. He was now a senior ranking officer that managed the funding and scientific direction of multiple programs. I am being somewhat secretive because I don’t want his identity to be known. Suffice it to say that I called my old buddy and we met several times and I eventually got a full rundown on the project that I had uncovered.

In brief, what the NICBR is working on is how to enhance the health and recovery of our soldiers and sailors by natural process means. The program builds upon civilian studies and well-known biological facts such as that our bodies have a powerful defense against the growth of cancers, tumors and other defects like leukemia and lymphoma. Among these defenses are tumor suppressors and they work as described above by inhibiting the telomerase of the cancer cells. In the process, they also have the same but slower effect on normal cells – thus contributing to our aging. That means that if these Myofibroblasts stem cells are enhanced and are TTA tagged to repair and lengthen the telomeres of cells, they will do the same for cancer cells making people highly susceptible to tumors and cancers. If, on the other hand, they enhance the telomerase inhibitor in the cancer cells, they will also accelerate the aging process by reducing the length of telomeres in normal cells. We don’t want either one of these.

This joint NICBR team of researchers found that the accelerated lengthening of telomeres (ALT) is a process that can be enhanced using a tumor suppressor called ataxia-telangiectasia mutated kinase or ATM. Using ATM with Myofibroblasts stem cells and TTA tagging gave a marginal benefit of reducing cancers while having a slightly less reduction of cell aging. There was however, another one of those amazing accidental discoveries. During the testing they had to use various cultured and collected Myofibroblasts batches in their attempt to differentiate the effects of the TTA of normal cells from that of cancer cells.

Quite by accident, it was discovered that one batch of the Myofibroblasts cells had an immediate and profound differentiation of normal and cancer cells. This one batch of stem cells had the simultaneous effect of tagging of the telomeres to cause the repair and lengthening of the telomeres of normal cells while inhibiting the telomerase of the cancer cells. Upon closer examination, it was found that the only variable was that the Myofibroblasts of that batch was collected from the researcher that had been able to enhance Myofibroblasts production using photobiomodulation in the presence of enhanced phytochemicals, including phenolics and flavonoids – the bioactive compounds in ….apples.

The NICBR team immediately zeroed in one the active mechanisms and processes and discovered that when ATM is lacking, aging accelerates but they found that by manipulation of the p53/p16 ink4a expression in the presence of the photobiomodulated Myofibroblasts cells, they can differentiate the effects of the TTA of normal cells from that of cancer cells. The method involves using the catalytic subunit telomerase reverse transcriptase (TERT) of the telomerase enzyme to direct the Myofibroblasts to repair the telomere ends by tagging and using the TTAGGG repeat with manipulated p53/p16ink4a -Rb-mediated checkpoints and a very complicated process that involves bmi-1 and p10arf. I am not really sure what that means but I am assured that this differentiated TTA coding process works and can be used to tag very specific repair sites.

In other words, using differentiated TTA with the photobiomodulated Myofibroblasts, the specially created stem cells can be essentially programmed to rebuild the telomeres back to what they were in childhood without any (known) serious side effects. It was, however, the presence of apples in the process that made the difference between success and failure….again.

Once the differentiated TTA coding is combined with the photobiomodulated Myofibroblasts using TERT, these special stem cells will seek out and perform an endless repair of the normal cell telomeres while suppressing the telomeres on cancer and tumor cells. That will have the effect of stopping or greatly slowing the aging process.

There is just one problem. There are not enough Myofibroblasts in the blood to effect aging sufficiently over a long period of time. But, as described above, fibroblasts are not only created within the bone marrow, but also the quantity of fibroblasts can be stimulated and expanded in the presence of photobiomodulation (LLLT). AND we know from the above studies that the conversion of fibroblasts into Myofibroblasts is greatly enhanced by the unique biochemicals in apples in the presence of LLLT. Soooo….

In Summary:

I found that I could use a combination of certain apples and low-level laser therapy (LLLT), also known as photobiomodulation, to stimulate both the production of fibroblasts and the conversion of fibroblasts into Myofibroblasts. These light-stimulated Myofibroblasts cells, when used in connection with a special cell tagging process called TTA can be made to enhance the telomeres on normal healthy cells while suppressing the growth of telomeres of cancer and tumor cells. The end result is that the cells of the body approach immortality.

This has been a long research on my part and has led me down many dead end paths. Plato helped me with a lot of this research and led me into areas that I would not have otherwise pursued. My former Dept. of Defense contacts gave me access to research databases and research findings that are not all available to the public. Many of the medical studies I read were published in obscure journals or newsletters that are only available from a few sources. Many of the links that I followed were links that I found between two different studies that were not individually aware of each other. In other words, I didn’t do any of the actual research described here but I (and Plato) did make a lot of logical connections between the various research papers I found. To my knowledge, no one has taken this as far as I have except the few medical researcher friends of mine that helped me with getting access to the LLLT and performed the TTA coding for me.

But this is not just another story; I can tell you today that it works. At least, I am pretty sure it works as I have done this on myself.

The use of the LLLT was easy. I have been using 3.75 watts/cm2 (which is a relatively powerful setting that I gradually worked up to over a year of therapy). I have been experimenting with 640 to 720 nanometers for the scan wavelength (just below the infrared range) in bursts of 370 nanoseconds. All of these are settings that have evolved over time and will continue to be refined. Of course, I also have been playing around with various aspects of using the apples – eating them, cooking them, juice, pulp, skins, seeds, etc. The problem is that any change in the treatment does not have an immediate result. I have to wait weeks to see if there are any changes and then they are often very small changes that can easily go unnoticed. Despite this, the results have been subtle but have accumulated into significant changes.

I have always been in good health but until 6 months ago, I had bad arthritis in my hands and knees. That is gone. My skin has lost most of that pixilated look that old people get and many of my “age spots” have disappeared. I use to have morning pains and had trouble stretching out or touching the floor. Now I can keep my knees straight and put my hands flat on the floor. I have not been sick despite several exposures to the flu – including H1N1. I have more energy and have stopped wearing my glasses.

As with all of my articles on this blog, I make no representations about this story except to challenge you to research it for yourself. Most of the basics are readily available on the web and a lot of the details can be found in some good medical databases like Medline, EMBASE, PubMed and WISDOM. I also used ARL, NRL and NIH resources.

This all has taken place over the past 38 months but the self treatments have been only over the past 7 months so I have a long way to go to show I will live longer, let alone, live forever, but right now I am feeling pretty good.

Just so you’ll know, I have submitted several patent applications for various processes and methods that I have described above. In several cases, a patent already exists but thru a process called drug repositioning, I can apply for a patent for an alternative use of an existing patented drug. This is only necessary for the TTA tagging chemical and the patent on that chemical expired in 2007. I have patents in on the LLLT treatment settings that I have found to be most successful (not listed in this article) and in the optimum “application” of the apples to the processes – I didn’t exactly tell the whole story above. There are a few details that make it significantly more effective that I described above and those are the parts that are being patented. I say this just so everyone knows that any attempt to duplicate my processes will be sued by me for patent infringement. I have a lawyer that will not charge me anything unless he wins and he is convinced that he can will any such suit.

I want to also caution everyone that parts of this can be very dangerous. If you get it wrong, you can significantly enhance the growth of tumors or cancers in your body and no one can do anything to stop them. Don’t mess with this.