Ancient Diseases Have the Potential to Regenerate Vital Organs
The bacterium Mycobacterium Leprae causes leprosy, a chronic infection. The disease affects the nerves, mucous membranes and skin. It can cause severe disability and disfigurement if not treated.
The chronic infection caused by Mycobacterium Leprae is the oldest and persistent disease in the world. New research has revealed that leprosy-causing bacteria can also stimulate liver growth in adults without scarring or causing any damage. Scientists discovered that leprosy-associated parasites can reprogram liver cells to grow larger.
These findings indicate that this natural process could be used to rejuvenate aged livers and increase the healthspan, or period of living without disease in humans. This process may be used to regenerate damaged or scarred livers. It could reduce the need for liver surgery, currently the only treatment available for people with severely damaged livers.