Monthly Archives: November 2010

News Science Harvard Scientists Reverse The Ageing Process In Mice – Now For Humans

Harvard scientists were surprised that they saw a dramatic reversal, not just a slowing down, of the ageing in mice. Now they believe they might be able to regenerate human organs.

Scientists claim to be a step closer to reversing the ageing process after rejuvenating worn out organs in elderly mice. The experimental treatment developed by researchers at Harvard Medical School turned weak and feeble old mice into healthy animals by regenerating their aged bodies.

The surprise recovery of the animals has raised hopes among scientists that it may be possible to achieve a similar feat in humans – or at least to slow down the ageing process.

An anti-ageing therapy could have a dramatic impact on public health by reducing the burden of age-related health problems, such as dementia, stroke and heart disease, and prolonging the quality of life for an increasingly aged population.

“What we saw in these animals was not a slowing down or stabilisation of the ageing process. We saw a dramatic reversal – and that was unexpected,” said Ronald DePinho, who led the study, which was published in the journal Nature.

“This could lead to strategies that enhance the regenerative potential of organs as individuals age and so increase their quality of life. Whether it serves to increase longevity is a question we are not yet in a position to answer.”

The ageing process is poorly understood, but scientists know it is caused by many factors. Highly reactive particles called free radicals are made naturally in the body and cause damage to cells, while smoking, ultraviolet light and other environmental factors contribute to ageing.

The Harvard group focused on a process called telomere shortening. Most cells in the body contain 23 pairs of chromosomes, which carry our DNA. At the ends of each chromosome is a protective cap called a telomere. Each time a cell divides, the telomeres are snipped shorter, until eventually they stop working and the cell dies or goes into a suspended state called “senescence”. The process is behind much of the wear and tear associated with ageing.


Guide to iPad SIM cards

There’s no doubt that one of the coolest gadgets currently on the market for enjoying the convenience of mobile internet on the go is the Apple iPad. This amazing little tablet computing device allows you to browse the web, check email plus carry out all of the other day to day computing tasks in the luxury confines of a fabulous flat-screen.

Better still, thanks to mobile broadband you can take it just about anywhere and still keep surfing, no matter what sort of surroundings you’re in. The basic version of the Apple iPad only comes with Wi-Fi, but if you splash out another £100 or so you’ll be able to get the model that comes with 3G, which means you can connect to the mobile network throughout the UK.

Explore your options

In order to get onto the mobile network here you’ll need to first buy your Apple iPad device and then explore the deals that are available for the iPad SIM card. This is a sliver of plastic, a bit like the SIM cards that come with mobile phones, although it is smaller so regular SIM’s will not fit the iPad. In that respect you’ll need to search for a dedicated iPad SIM, which can be done via a comparison website such as Broadband Genie.

While the Apple iPad is still a fairly new device, the deals for iPad SIM cards are not exactly plentiful but if you use a free comparison service such as this you’ll be able to quickly and easily find the sort of deal that is best for your needs. It’s possible to get iPad SIM card deals in a couple of different incarnations too, with pay-as-you-go being a good idea for anyone watching their finances.

You can use this route to buy the iPad SIM and simply top it up as you need available credit and you only pay for the time you are connected and the data that you use. This is a great idea for lightweight internet users who only casually browse the web and dip into email. Heavier users might want to have a look at a contract deal and these start from as little as one-month rolling contracts, right through to longer term options.

Terms of use

Whichever route you decide to take with the Apple iPad then you’ll need to check the terms and conditions of any deal. This is so you can be sure that the package that you pick will fit the bill. One thing to watch for is data usage conditions, which determines how much content you can download and upload during a particular time period. If you download movies and music, for example, this can use up a quota of data usage, so check that the deal you want caters for this.

Mobile broadband can also be subject to coverage issues sometimes, in the same way as a mobile phones, although you can use the humble comparison website to check coverage levels and also the speed that can be expected, using free online tools. This will enable you to pick a package that not only fits the bill, but also choose the one that fits how much you wish to spend.

Be wary of using the iPad overseas too, as this might be affected by ‘roaming’ charges, which can be costly in much the same way as mobile phones are costly to use when you’re on holiday. Aside from that small downside, the Apple iPad is a fantastic way to stay online while you’re on the move.

About the author: Rob Clymo writes on behalf of, the independent comparison website for broadband, mobile broadband and smartphones.