Dr Bill Andrews interviewed by high-profile media doctor Ross Walker on Sydney’s 2UE

High-profile media doctor Ross Walker interviewed Dr Bill Andrews on Sydney’s 2UE about telomeres and his anti aging breakthrough.

Good evening Bill.

Oh, good evening. Thank you for having me.

It’s a great pleasure. Now can you explain to our listeners, what are telomeres.

Telomeres are things, they’re really small things inside our cells at the very tips of our chromosomes. Our chromosomes are where all of our genes are, things like our hair color, eye color, stuff like that. But the very tips of our chromosomes are called the telomeres. It’s kind of like a shoelace if you think about it. It’s the caps on your shoelaces are equivalent to the telomeres on your chromosomes.

So how do these telomeres reverse aging or affecting the telomeres reverse aging?

Well, first the telomeres shorten as you age and the shortening seems to have an effect on gene expression of various genes on the chromosomes. It’s not totally understood how that happens but we were able to show 20 years ago that if we lengthen the telomeres that gene expression pattern reverses to a young expression pattern. And we don’t know how but at least we knew that it did. And so, so we we did that a long time ago by using gene therapy techniques which really can’t be used for humans. Ever since then we’ve been trying to develop chemicals or natural products that will help cause ourselves to start producing its own elements to lengthen the telomeres and that element is called, it’s an enzyme called telomerase, that’s we have a gene for it it’s just not turned on and we’re looking for things that will cause our cells to start producing telomerase to lengthen the telomeres.

Right, so you’ve discovered the compound that does in fact affect telomerase. How did you discover the compound and what is it?

Oh, well, I’ll tell you it was years and years of just random drug screening at first. We were, we must have tested three hundred thousand different chemicals at random just looking for anything that that stimulated cells to start producing telomerase. We found the very first one in 2007 and it was the 57,684th chemical that we tested. That, that just opened the door to a lot of stuff because now we had a positive control and so further screening was much simplified, much faster and at about three hundred and fourteen thousand, it was actually 314,818 we found the chemical that is actually in the product that we’re talking about today.

Right. Ok now, the chemical, is it, was, from what? Most things come from something in nature. So for example I know there is one telomere lengthener called TA-65 that comes from Astragalus, so where did your compound come from?

Yeah well, first of all let me say that I also played a role in developing TA-65 and I also did the clinical studies on TA-65 to show that it works. But this is actually a synthetic chemical. Our efforts to do natural products that have you know been successful of getting things that stimulate telomerase in human cells but not to the levels that we really need to see some really promising things. So the synthetic chemical, actually the synthetic chemicals in the tests that we’ve done has been shown to be much safer than most natural products, so that’s really good, but the, it’s a synthetic chemical.

Thank you. So what trials have been performed on this chemical? And can you tell us a bit about the safety data?

Well, it was done in a company called Abige.

About The Author

Katherine Baltazar

I am a media reporter writing for the Hair, Beauty and Spa Industry. I've been writing and covering salons, beauty products and hair treatments for the pace 5 years.