Injecting/transfusing yourself with the blood of virgins (Kim Jong II and Pope Innocent VIII – well maybe not so innocent as blood donors all died), bathing in it (Countess Bathory – or Ingrid Pitt if you’re a Hammer film fan) or just taking a bloody bite (Dracula and a long line of vampires since) may seem other-worldly but scientists now believe that they may have been onto something.
Scientists in California are testing an Alzheimer’s treatment that involves injecting blood plasma from young people in the hope it will reduce brain ageing.
Saul Vileda’s experiments with mice of different ages showed that when you mix their blood. Giving blood from older mice to younger mice accelerated cognitive decline.
He then found that when he injected older mice with young blood it changed the brain circuitry in the older mice creating new synaptic connections. Plasticity also returned relating to learning and memory-related genes.
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