Nightly News | November 06, 2011
>>> back now with a breakthrough discovery by scientists at the prestigious mayo clinic being hailed as a potential game changer. in the race to turn back the clock , scientists say the fountain of youth could lie in cutting edge treatment to help fight everything from wrinkles and sagging to ailments that come with old age. we get the details tonight from nbc's mara schiavocampo.
>> correct what ages you.
>> reporter: the business of youth.
>> now we have a solution for wrinkles.
>> reporter: one that includes thousands of products --
>> i'm trying to look as good as i possibly can.
>> reporter: -- procedures and even surgery. all to turn back the clock .
>> it is amazing what happened in the last ten, 15 years. i mean, technology has taken it to a whole other level.
>> reporter: it is all a big moneymaker. the market for anti-aging product ets in the u.s. is about $80 billion and is expected to double by the year 2015 . and now what may be the most intriguing development in years. it comes from the famed mayo clinic , where researchers have found that cleansing the body of certain cells can delay those pesky markers of aging like wrinkles and sagging and possibly be used to postpone age-related diseases like alzheimer's and dementia. the experiment was done with these two mice. while they look different, one is scrawny and haggard, the other plump and vibrant, they're the same age.
>> what we have done here is identify a group of cells that really seems to contribute to age-related diseases and that if you work to remove those, clear them, that that would have some health benefits without having too much health risks.
>> reporter: it is a far cry from remedies of centuries past, eating organs of young animals, getting transfusions of blood from younger men, searching for a fountain of youth . but anti-aging experts say this latest discovery could be a real breakthrough, not by extending life, but youth.
>> this work is -- predicts a model of aging that we can do something about, that has a suggestion for how to treat it in people.
>> reporter: similar research hasn't been started in humans yet, but just the prospect of a real remedy for aging is enticing.
>> a lot of people who are baby boomer age who love to hear something like that.
>> i think it is amazing that -- because i already have wrinkles myself.
>> reporter: so while it is often said that youth is wasted on the young , this research suggests that may not be true much longer. mara schiavocampo, nbc news, new york.