Telomerase

Nu-Skin’s Age Loc technology

Direct marketing company Nu-Skin launched their new age-loc technology in 2008 and have been rolling out the age-loc range and galvanic spa system globally ever since. With nearly 4000 facebook fans and sales agents spanning the four corners of the globe this brand had to be worth a look. So what does this range have that is so special? I went along to a launch earlier this year to find out and have since been digging around in the deepest darkest biology books to put it all into perspective.

BEFORE?

The Age loc range’s unique selling point is the way that it markets its approach to “anti-ageing”. As our skin ages our cells become less energetic, start making a few mistakes here and there and generally slow down. That, you would think is quite acceptable being, as though they have put in 24/7 hard labour for god knows how many years. Only for some, it isn’t great. Our genetics, pollution, diet, overall health and stress levels all take their toll leaving many of us reaching for the instant lift face cream long before our 60th birthday.

So, can we turn back the clock?

Nu-Skin have patented the name “ar NOX” and use this to describe an enzyme that occurs in the skin and is present in increasing concentrations as the skin ages. Apparently the higher your level of Arnox the older you will look. The “discovery” of arNOX has been hailed as a breakthrough for anti-ageing products as once this can be controlled, the ageing process can be halted from within.

Intrinsic ageing (ageing due to natural causes) has been widely studied and it was back in 1965 that a major breakthrough […]

Nobel Prize Winning Chemistry

Australian born Dr Elizabeth Blackburn was part of a Nobel Prize winning team this week for her work in Physiology and Medicine.  Her work, which was acknowledged in 1998 with the Australian  Prime Ministers Prize for Science may well change the way we (cosmetic chemists) develop anti-ageing products.  Elizabeth Blackburn, Carol Greider and Jack Szostak  have been studying the  enzyme  Telomerase since the early 1980’s, building up a picture of its structure and how it interacts with DNA and what that means for our cellular health.

They found that this enzyme plays a vital part in DNA replication, ensuring that everything runs smoothly in the cell. Blackburn described Telomerase  in a 1997 New York Times interview as the cap bits on the end of your shoelaces – without them the laces start to fray.  Sounds pretty important to me!

The bit that I am most fascinated by is the link between stress and telomerase. It is tempting to use the old phrase “The mind Vs the Body” here but when you think about it the mind IS the body, it is made up from cells just like every other part of us. So, the fact that this Nobel Prize winning team have found a link between chronic stress and the size of the telomerase in cells is interesting indeed.   You can read more about this by following this link to the Nobel Prize interview.

What I am less interested in is the fact that this team is made up of two women. It seems quite odd that as we approach 2010 we still find the need to point out how few women have won Nobel Prizes – overall it is a small percentage and in the field […]