Read More: The Guardian
For those who cannot exercise, it could be the answer: rather than spending hours in the gym, the benefits of fitness training could be delivered in a tablet. The prospect of an “exercise pill” might be music to the ears of couch potatoes, long-distance truck drivers and stressed-out office workers, but researchers believe it could transform the lives of people who are unable to exercise because of obesity or serious physical disabilities. Hopes for such a pill emerged on Tuesday from scientists who found that an experimental drug allowed mice to run on a treadmill for 270 minutes before exhaustion set in. Mice that went without the drug lasted only 160 minutes before reaching their physical limit. The endurance boost was accompanied by other apparent health benefits, scientists found, leading mice who had the drug for eight weeks to put on less weight and better control their blood sugar levels, suggesting a pill might also help people with diabetes. Scientists led by Ronald Evans at the Salk Institute in San Diego made the discovery after they set out to explore what endurance meant on the molecular level. “If we really understand the science, can we replace training with a drug?” he said.