Experts now believe that they are close to turning back the clock as much as 40 years after identifying a natural compound that is proven to rewind old age in mice. It is a protein found in all living cells called NAD and could be the key to slowing down the aging process. Tests on two-year-old mice who had been given the NAD-producing compound for just one week had body tissue which resembled that of a six-month old. Professor David Sinclair, an expert in genetics at Harvard Medical School said: 'In human years, this would be like a 60-year-old converting to a 20-year-old in these specific areas.' The compound works by restoring communication lines between energy cells within the body which have broken down over time. Longer term, the professor plans to test if the compound will give mice a healthier, longer life. Tim Spector, professor of genetic epidemiology at King’s College London, stated: 'This is an intriguing and exciting finding that some aspects of the ageing process are reversible. 'It is however a long and tough way to go from these nice mouse experiments to showing real anti-ageing effects in humans without side effects.' The scientists are still trying to determine whether the compound can be used to treat rare diseases safely and if it can also be used in treating type 1 and type 2 diabetes. The thought of being able to turn back the aging process is certainly not a new one. Spanish Conquistadors at one point thought that the Fountain of Youth even existed in America. The question here is whether this compound will go the way of plastic surgery-available only to those that can afford it and it's treatments. But beyond the cosmetic implications of the newly discovered compound are the potentially life-changing health implications for many who are battling terrible diseases. And in that case dealing with the 20 year old faces on 60 year olds might be worth it.