Northern California Science Writers Association

Resetting the Aging Clock

  • Wednesday, March 21, 2012
  • Basque Cultural Center, South San Francisco
NCSWA Spring Dinner:

Was Dracula onto something? Come to the NCSWA dinner on March 21 to hear Stanford neuroscientist Tom Rando, MD, PhD, talk about his cutting-edge research and find out. Rando’s investigations suggest we mortals might someday be able to rejuvenate our aging bodies with factors circulating in young blood.

Rando directs the Glenn Laboratories at Stanford, one of four such centers funded by the Paul. F. Glenn Foundation. This organization’s objective is to study the underlying biology of aging undefined and, perhaps, to learn how to slow and reverse the aging process. Rando has found that the secret to executing this alchemy may lie in revitalizing the stem cells residing in our tissues.

Rando and his colleagues arrived at these findings by studying pairs of mice undefined one young, one old undefined whose circulatory systems had been surgically joined so blood from each mouse could percolate through the other’s tissues. The scientists have shown that exposing older mice to younger mice’s blood causes stem cells in muscle, liver, skin and brain tissue of older to mice to thrive, rejuvenating these tissues.

The changes, for better or worse, are caused not by blood cells but by soluble substances carried in the blood.

Unlike embryonic stem cells or the more recently discovered iPS cells, the more-mature stem cells in our skin, livers, brains, muscles and so forth already "know what they want to be when they grow up." Plus, they’re already pre-positioned just where they need to be to get the job done. Isolating blood-borne substances that reboot adult stem-cells’ vitality may thus be a step toward developing tonics for our tiring tissues as we grow older.


6:30 pm – No-host happy hour
7:30 pm – Dinner
8:30 pm – Speaker


Basque Cultural Center (middle dining room)
599 Railroad Avenue
South San Francisco

PARKING is available on-site. Maps, directions, and other information can be found at:

For those interested in CARPOOLING, Corinna Wu has generously offered to coordinate rides. If you need a ride or can offer a ride to another NCSWA'an, contact Corinna at, and she will connect ride seekers to ride providers

The cost is $27 members/$20 students/$31 non-members.

The Basque Cultural Center serves French-accented fare in a private banquet room. Entrée choices include:

Salmon with Champagne Sauce
Breast of Chicken Chasseur
Vegetarian Pasta.

All entrées are served with soup, salad, bread and butter, plus ice cream for dessert and coffee. There is a full-service (no-host) bar.

Pay online via Paypal (you can use a credit card; no Paypal account is required)
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