Changes in Blood Flow and Angiogenesis Induced in the Elderly by Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy


The paradigm The accumulation of damage to molecules, cells and tissues over a lifetime that
contributes to aging eventually leads to frailty and malfunction. The past decade has seen
fundamental advances in our understanding of the aging process and raised optimism that
interventions to slow ageing may be on the horizon. The aging process is linked to energy
deficit due to tissue hypoxia and mitochondria dysfunction.

– Mitochondria dysfunction- Mitochondria are the primary generator of energy by means of
ATP synthesis and their dysfunction leads to cellular function decline and degenerative
changes. In addition, mitochondria dysfunction in stem cells decreases the capabilities
for tissue regeneration.

– Tissue hypoxia- Atherosclerosis is a chronic inflammatory response that damages arterial
blood vessels. It begins in childhood and progresses throughout life. A vicious cycle
occurs as mitochondrial dysfunction accelerates atherosclerosis and the waning of
microvasculature, resulting in decrease blood supply and ensuing relative tissue
hypoxia. The decrease oxygen supply to the mitochondria further exacerbates
mitochondrial dysfunction.

Hyperbaric oxygen can increase the partial pressure of dissolved (non-hemoglobin-bound)
oxygen 20-30 fold and produce two main effects. First, it can eliminate the relative tissue
hypoxia induced by atherosclerosis. Second, because mitochondria function is directly
influenced by the partial pressure of dissolved oxygen, hyperbaric oxygen can amend
mitochondrial dysfunction. Thus, the investigators suggest hyperbaric oxygen as a novel
method for breaking the vicious cycle of degeneration and perhaps even for reversing the
aging process.

The study is designed as a prospective crossover study aiming to evaluate the therapeutic
effects of HBOT on the Brain, Cardiovascular and Immune system, Skin, Erectile (sexual
functions), liver and Kidneys, of aging population.

After signing an informed consent form, patients will be invited for baseline evaluations.
All patients would be evaluated 3 times – at baseline, after 3 months of follow up, and after
additional 3 months of HBOT protocol. The evaluation will include cognitive assessment,
questionnaires, MRI scans, blood tests and skin photograph and biopsy. In addition, blood
tests will be drawn before and after the 20th, 40th and the 60th sessions for stem cells and
mitochondria tests.

Patients will receive 60 daily sessions, 5 days/week, 90 minutes each with 5 minutes air
break every 30 minutes, 100% oxygen at 2 ATA.




Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy

Start Date:

December 2016


Assaf-Harofeh Medical Center

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