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University of Dayton Study Overturns 250-Year-Old Belief About Effects of Age, Repeated Injury on Tissue Regeneration
Date:7/13/2011

DAYTON, Ohio, July 13, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Scientists have been wrong for 250 years about a fundamental aspect of tissue regeneration, according to a University of Dayton biologist who says his recent discovery is good news for humans.

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Watch University of Dayton biologist Panagiotis Tsonis explain his discovery: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8X4fqVNjwJI

In research published in Nature Communications this month, Panagiotis Tsonis concludes repeated regeneration, even at old age, does not alter the capacity of newts to regenerate tissue. His findings overturn long-accepted theories proposed by regeneration scientists that age and repeated amputation negatively affect regeneration.

Tsonis, director of the University of Dayton's Center for Tissue Regeneration and Engineering at Dayton (TREND), said his discovery will benefit the entire field of regeneration research and brings science one step closer to a complete understanding of how newts regenerate, which Tsonis believes will one day enable humans to replicate the process.

"We are still a long way from relating this to humans, but what this shows is that the newt is an excellent source for finding answers to regeneration, particularly as it relates to old age," he said. "The newt not only has good regeneration properties, but it has the ability to protect and preserve regeneration."

The discovery lays the groundwork for further research on aging and regeneration, including investigations into differences in the regeneration processes of older and younger newts, such as changes in how cells participate in regeneration or in which cells are used. Another study could investigate what happens with newts' telomeres, the ends of DNA strands that degenerate as cells multi
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