Age Reversal Effects from Hyperbaric Treatments

A new study from Tel Aviv University and the Shamir Medical Center indicates that HBOT (treatments with high-pressure oxygen) in healthy aging adults can stop the aging of blood cells.

The researchers found that a unique protocol of treatments in a pressure chamber can reverse two major processes associated with aging and its illnesses: the shortening of telomeres –​ protective regions located at both ends of every chromosome (the chromosomes contain the genetic material in the cell’s nucleus) – and the accumulation of senescent (old and malfunctioning) cells in the body. Focusing on immune cells containing DNA, obtained from the participants’ blood, the study discovered a significant lengthening – up to 38% – of the telomeres, as well as a decrease of up to 37% in the presence of senescent cells.

They exposed 35 healthy individuals aged 64 or over to a series of 60 hyperbaric sessions over a period of 90 days. Each participant provided blood samples at four different points in time – before, during, at the end and after the series of treatments, and the researchers analyzed various immune cells (cells containing DNA) in the blood and compared the results.

The findings indicated that the treatments actually reversed the aging process in two of its major aspects: The telomeres at the ends of the chromosomes grew longer instead of shorter, at a rate of 20%-38% for the different cell types; and the percentage of senescent cells in the overall cell population was reduced significantly – by 11%-37% depending on cell type.

Written By Brian Wang,

25 thoughts on “Age Reversal Effects from Hyperbaric Treatments”

  1. What is more—if someone is having a heart attack, you DON’T give them pure oxygen. You have to add a bit of CO2 to stop vasoconstriction

  2. Well, not HIIT exactly, just without breathing, such as swimming underwater (dangerous) or running for a while with slow, counted breaths, repeatedly. All of these theories as to the current topic depend on what the 5 min breaks *mean*, whether they simulate anoxia and if that matters. And I don't do it while falling asleep, intentionally at least. Cycling sleep could cause problems in many ways. edit: my goal is simply to increase red blood cells, for better running when needed. I also run right after eating, so that the *bad* competition between gut and lungs for blood would lead to more blood.

  3. "independently replicated with meticulous process" is the best next step and probably what he meant.

    People tend to have varying misconceptions about peer review, what it is and isn't. Some treat peer reviewed journals as a big book of truth instead of a big book of research that appears to have followed standard practices.
    Research published in peer reviewed could easily be bunkum if it isn't independently supported by other research and/or replicated.

  4. Thing is, wouldn't holding your breath just be an artificial form of sleep apnea. And we know sleep apnea is very bad for health? It almost certainly leads to the accumulation of toxins in the brain and elsewhere.
    The HIIT part…if that is what you are doing…is probably great though.

  5. "researchers analyzed various immune cells (cells containing DNA) in the blood " Yes, not red cells. But the treatment is in some ways related to my O manipulation attempt, which had the more predictable effect, like living at high altitudes perhaps. I'm most interested in the 5 min breaks potentially being important. I can hold my breath and simulate anoxia!

  6. I don't think they could be talking about red blood cells. That funky near doughnut shape they have is because they have no nucleus and thus no telomeres. 
    Blood needs tricks to bypass the Hayflick division limit. Red blood cells achieve this by having just marrow make daughter cells but without making a copy of the DNA. This is a very safe approach. White blood cells naturally extend their telomers which is a bit more risky which is why most leukemia is from the white blood cells rather than the red marrow cells. Though white blood cells can still run down and fail to extend, so there probably is some benefit to this treatment.
    I am not that excited about the telomere extension part. I am more interested in the senescent cell clearance part. And perhaps helping tissues perform their functions better allowing them to catch up with waste processing and damage repair.
    I would not expect this treatment to extend telomeres in cells that don't naturally express telomerase. For that we probably need genetic modification or more stem cells.

  7. They were actually using two atmospheres pure oxygen, alternated with regular air at two atmospheres pressure. You're not going to get over one atmosphere of O2 pressure without a pressure vessel.

    Mind, a 1 atmosphere pressure vessel for a human doesn't need to be much more than a balloon.

  8. Practically speaking, this would suggest sleeping under a home oxygen mask might work, but you'll need a lot more oxygen then the typical supplemental oxygen used by the elderly via a cannula feed.

  9. Also consider that the free radical theory of aging says cells get worn down by free radical damage hastening cellular death and burns through the generations of replacements. If this instead extends the telomeres, it is adding generations rather than erasing them.

  10. Oxygen itself is not a free radical. It must acquire a charge. Temperature is the major factor there, and Ph is also, to a lesser degree. And we have free radical quenchers (antioxidants). Oxygen is not a free radical but it is often the starting point: Superoxide, Oxygen radical, Hydroxyl, Alkoxyradical, Peroxyl radical, Nitric oxide (nitrogen monoxide) and Nitrogen dioxide are the main free radicals. These are the kinds of things made during incomplete combustion/metabolism and normal metabolism. And just as more oxygen availability increases complete combustion, I would expect it to assist with marginally cleaner metabolism. I will admit this is conjecture on my part, but no more conjecture than your thought that it might increase cancer and aging.
    I suspect you are seeing this as similar to intense cardiovascular exercise where we use large amounts of oxygen to do a lot of metabolism. But there are pronounced differences here. More oxygen may be taken in, in both cases, but as metabolism does not rise appreciably in the hyperbaric chamber, the volume of free radicals generated during metabolism should not be any worse. The antioxidants also should not be overwhelmed with large volumes of free radicals to quench. That shortage is often the cause of damage. The large deficiency in available antioxidants relative to free radicals in smoking and long intense exercise is at the crux of that damage.

  11. I have done intentional anaerobic parts of my exercise routine all of my life, and have almost over the *limit* red blood count. The various reports of this do not uniformly state the process, but I suppose I could read the thing! edit: "Each session included breathing 100% oxygen by mask at 2ATA for 90 minutes with 5-minute air breaks every 20 minutes". Some reports focus on the 5 min air breaks as perhaps appearing to be anoxia, and causing the desired response.

  12. Nature v Nurture, the old question. Can Primal Therapy reverse detrimental epigenetic settings that formed during adverse childhood experiences? YES!

  13. Hyperbaric treatment may increase telomere length which will result in more potential cell divisions before senescence, but there is a problem here:

    Increased ppO2 due to hyperbaric treatment also increases reactive oxygen species and these are know to cause DNA damage, which is the major cause of ageing (and cancer).

    In synergy with increased expression of DNA damage repair enzymes, this may be useful, but until these types of problems are addressed, increasing teleomere length is a sideshow. This is a small step towards anti-ageing at best, and might even make ageing worse. Nothing to get too excited about yet.

  14. I would take a wild guess and say that the blood cells, seeing as they replicate much faster than many tissues, will change in response to treatment much more than those tissues where the individual cells last for years, if not decades.

    They only report blood results, so the complete "biological age" would require far more extensive investigation, of just about all tissue types. After all, no good having blood that acts like a 30 year old if your brain still operates like a centenarian.

    Though we do have some other results where merely getting young blood does tend to improve the rest of you too. Though didn't they track that down to a single chemical that was building up in older people?

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