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Diet of buckyballs nearly doubles rat lifespan


April 22, 2012

A recent study French has shown that a diet of  buckyballs dissolved in olive extends life...

A recent study French has shown that a diet of buckyballs dissolved in olive extends lifespans in rats (Photo: Shutterstock)

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Sometimes I (almost) envy mice, rats, and yeast - it seems that almost any aging research we carry out on them doubles their lifespan and returns semi-senescent (say, a human equivalent of about 60 years of age - not thinking of anyone in particular, of course) to youthful vigor. It now appears that dramatic anti-aging results are associated with dietary ingestion of buckyballs, more properly known as C-60 fullerene.

A recent French study looking for chronic toxicity resulting from ingesting buckyballs dissolved in olive oil found that 10 month old rats who ingested the human equivalent of a tenth of a gram of C-60 buckyballs (which in technical grades cost less than US$10/gram) several times a week showed extended lifespans instead of toxic effects.

The molecular structure of a C-60 buckyball (Photo: Shutterstock)

All C-60-treated rats survived to at least 59 months, with the oldest surviving to 66 months. The control group lived for periods ranging from 17 months to 37 months, while an additional group fed only the extra olive oil lived for periods of 36 to 57 months. For the curious, the olive oil dosage was equivalent to a person adding about eight tablespoons of uncooked olive oil to their daily diet without compensating for the additional calories. Similar results have been reported for mammals held in a state of semi-starvation, but that is obviously not a pleasant lifestyle.

All fullerenes are susceptible to clumping when dissolved in oil, so the preparation of the olive-oil/C-60 solution is rather lengthy. In these tests, 50 mg of C-60 buckyballs were added to 10 ml of virgin olive oil. These were stirred for two weeks at ambient temperatures with no incident light. Following the stirring, the solutions were centrifuged at 5,000 g for an hour. The fluid was separated from the precipitate, and was then passed through a 0.25 micron filter. The resulting liquid contained 0.8 mg/ml of C-60 buckyballs.

The results beg the question - what is going on here? Is the life extension just for those lucky rats again, or is there a mechanism that might transfer over to humans? The study was aimed at discovering if a diet of buckyballs has any toxic effects, and the good news is that no toxicity was found. The buckyballs did move throughout the body (including the brain and central nervous system), and even enter individual cells. The ingested C-60 had an elimination half-life from blood of about 10 hours, so was essentially fully eliminated from the body within two days. It is not clear from the report if the C-60 was eliminated from intracellular fluid on that time scale.

Specific studies of the effect of C-60 buckyballs on oxidative stress in the rats were performed by studying the effects of carbon tetrachloride (CCl4) injection. Carbon tetrachloride is well known to be poisonous to rats, being highly hepatotoxic (toxic to the liver). It is also associated with delirium and intoxication such as is experienced in the abuse of solvents.

Rats which had been pretreated by water, by olive oil, and by olive oil containing C-60 buckyballs all showed typical signs of intoxication within a few minutes of CCl4 injection. However, while intoxication persisted in the water and olive oil groups for 24 hours, the olive oil and C-60 group emerged from intoxication after only five hours.

In rats experiencing the pretreatment, but unexposed to carbon tetrachloride, autopsy revealed essentially normal livers. In those given a CCl4 injection, however, the livers from rats pretreated with water or olive oil showed important damage - a great deal of inflammation as well as large necrotic areas (dying or dead tissue). In contrast, the livers from rats pretreated with olive oil and C-60 buckyballs showed little damage or CCl4-induced cell death. Biochemical markers of liver damage showed far less elevation in the rats pretreated with olive oil and C-60.

It does appear there is a real physiological effect on metabolic processes, and that oxidative stress in particular is significantly reduced in rats by chronic oral ingestion of an olive oil/C-60 solution. As oxidative stress is one of the factors usually associated with aging, there may well be a reasonable mechanism for the lifespan extension, especially if excess oxidation within individual cells is prevented by intracellular buckyballs. Will people react to a treatment of this sort with lifespans of 180-200 years? Only time will tell.

The research was recently published in the journal Biomaterials

Source: Extreme Longevity

About the Author
Brian Dodson From an early age Brian wanted to become a scientist. He did, earning a Ph.D. in physics and embarking on an R&D career which has recently broken the 40th anniversary. What he didn't expect was that along the way he would become a patent agent, a rocket scientist, a gourmet cook, a biotech entrepreneur, an opera tenor and a science writer.   All articles by Brian Dodson

Much more in depth article than the one I previously read. Wonder where I can get ahold of C-60 buckyballs...

Paul Hutchinson
23rd April, 2012 @ 12:01 am PDT

Seems like the mice fed only on olive oil, did quite well; while those having added buckyballs, survived only a couple of weeks more. Is this an add for health giving properties of olive oil? Perhaps I should buy some shares!

23rd April, 2012 @ 03:43 am PDT

Toys"r"us in their secret military biochemicals section between the lego and hotwheels ;D rats sometimes react to things that dont work in humans and many strange things make rats live longer like a stress study i read about that mice who were shouted at daily for ten minutes had shorter lifespans and the ones who were given 10min of classical music lived much longer than the control group. Maybe shouting/music does have a real world human effect. So il take you to toys"r"us and il check on you every decade. What i want to see is human cell culture tests or was their goal to extend rat lives?

23rd April, 2012 @ 04:10 am PDT

^ Their goal as stated above was to try and determine any toxicity effects.

They weren't expecting the life extension as far as I understand.

Paul Hutchinson
23rd April, 2012 @ 05:28 am PDT

re: "The ingested C-60 had an elimination half-life from blood of about 10 hours, so was essentially fully eliminated from the body within two days. It is not clear from the report if the C-60 was eliminated from intracellular fluid on that time scale."

This is an absurd conclusion, unsupported by any of this 'quasi'-experimental presentation. Such trash-science has no place other than in the Journal of Ludicrous Conclusions.

J.A., M.D.

23rd April, 2012 @ 06:14 am PDT


this is not a scientific publication. Gizmag is targeted at the general public. The message is: "the elimination half life from blood plasma is short, so if it diffused freely inside the body, it would be greatly reduced in 2 days, but we don't now if it stays inside the cells".

And as I see it, the message is clear.

For a more thorough interpretation your quouted paragraph, change "body" for "plasma".

For criticizing the conclusions, please read the paper.

23rd April, 2012 @ 07:40 am PDT

"This is an absurd conclusion, unsupported by any of this 'quasi'-experimental presentation. Such trash-science has no place other than in the Journal of Ludicrous Conclusions. J.A., M.D. " rewrites to make it easier to read for the laymen ( J.A., M.D.'s out there) , it’s not meant to be your new medical journal. Read past a article (editing) and get to the original source.

23rd April, 2012 @ 09:07 am PDT

@Thunderbird4 - The exact quote was... "Similar results have been reported for mammals held in a state of semi-starvation." It has been well established that a longterm severely calorie-restricted diet in humans results in cells entering a protective state that extends human life for a decade or two. Olive oil consumption has been noted to have many beneficial effects but not nearly as dramatic as the life-extending effects of a semi-starvation diet. Therefore, consuming larger than average amounts of olive oil is probably good for you but will not give you the results close to what this article is presenting for the buckyball+olive oil mixture for rats. This article didn't reveal it, but I suspect the rats were probably on a semi-starvation/buckyball+olive oil diet.

23rd April, 2012 @ 09:21 am PDT

All of which begs the question: do humans need to live longer?

Clay Jones
23rd April, 2012 @ 09:24 am PDT

Interesting. Buckyballs are also a byproduct of a smoky acetylene torch. I wonder if welders who use acetylene rigs would breathe them in, and would that lengthen their lives? But that effect of olive oil really needs to be broadcast everywhere!

Larry Hooten
23rd April, 2012 @ 09:34 am PDT

It seems like an obvious control would be to use graphite or activated carbon. In fact, activated carbon is commonly used for such things as detoxification. It's not surprising that C60 would have a similar effect.

Victor Engel
23rd April, 2012 @ 09:43 am PDT

HEY!!! I'm over 60 and not quite semi-senscent, thank you very much. But I do take two tablespoons of extra-virgin first cold press olive oil every morning. A side of buckyballs would be nice, but I don't have a centrifuge.

Bruce H. Anderson
23rd April, 2012 @ 10:05 am PDT

Currently sitting in a dark room shaking a mixture of olive oil and candle soot, rich in buckminsterfullerene. Meanwhile, drinking as much of the extra olive oil as I can manage, hoping it will enable me to age only about ten days during the two weeks of shaking.

23rd April, 2012 @ 10:11 am PDT


I don't recall any conclusions being presented in the article posted by Gizmag so I don't think it should be placed, "in the Journal of Ludicrous Conclusions". Your concern with, "the elimination half life from blood plasma is short, so if it diffused freely inside the body, it would be greatly reduced in 2 days, but we don't now if it stays inside the cells," being a conclusion is strange because I don't think it was one.

If your concerned about, "whether the C-60 particle was eliminated from the body or broke down naturally within and never left," I wouldn't be to concerned because eitherway the side effects appear minimal (since the animals lived longer and not less.) This information would certainly lead one to believe C-60 can be used as a safe drug delivery system but I am meerly making this statement from brief observation and understanding of the particle (not making this statement as a "conclusion").

C-60 has been predicted/expected by many since its discovery to be eventually be an indispensible drug delivery system but it is only now that we are beginning to retrieve data on the initial research. Don't give up on it yet.

Matt Fletcher
23rd April, 2012 @ 10:40 am PDT

What the hell are buckyballs?

23rd April, 2012 @ 11:00 am PDT

One must first understand that animals are created perfect but not with a life span of perfection. Thus the DNA in every cell would prevent a freedom from death. The DNA in our human cells can only divide according to the original program. Thanks to our first parents we have to deal the temporary condition of getting old a dieing. This could be terminal if we do not research the life giver and source of life. Any attempts by humans to find life outside of this source is an exercise in futility.

23rd April, 2012 @ 12:15 pm PDT

Despite the obvious potential for extending the lifespan of humans, it is important to remember one of the most basic principles when reviewing studies of this nature.

THEY ARE RATS FOR CRYING OUT LOUD!. Have you ever tried to kill a rat? I hear they have rat poison parties where they cut it with baking soda and snort it. The truly crazy ones free base it.

By the way does anyone know where I can score some C-60 buckyballs, a G should do.

William D Howell
23rd April, 2012 @ 03:55 pm PDT

OK next is an olive oil buckyball cannabis trial. I reckon immortality is on the horizon!

Buckminster would be proud and Kurzweil is buying all he can get!

Steve Lane
23rd April, 2012 @ 04:17 pm PDT

Ukrainian scientists in Kharkiv Ukraine invented the only water soluble fullerene compound in the world called hydrated fullerenes or HyFn-C60. They got approval from the Ukrainian Ministry of Health to produce a water drink with fullerenes called Fullurene Water Solution or FWS...the worlds first nanotech health drink after 15 years of research and clinical trials

See my blog post

Walter Derzko

Walter Derzko
23rd April, 2012 @ 07:02 pm PDT

Dont eat bucky balls---disolve them---shake the 5h1t out of them----filter the big bits---

eat the remainder----whatever you do----dont let a bucky ball into your system..

Nahhhhhh something smells

Mike MacDonald
24th April, 2012 @ 01:37 am PDT

I wonder if the just plain olive oil was treated to a centrifuge, filtration, and all that stirring. If it wasn't perhaps just that processing resulted in the improvement over the plain olive oil. Or maybe it was processed and the buckyballs just reduced the deterioration of the oil under all that processing. For all we know the buckyballs made the oil taste bad so the rats ate less giving some benefits from calorie reduction...or maybe it tasted better and they got more olive oil in their system. I think there needs to be more tests to verify that the buckyballs are what made a difference.

24th April, 2012 @ 02:06 am PDT

Buckeyballs or Fullerenes or C-60 are safe; They are found in Nature; it's just 60 atoms of Carbon, Carbon based molecules are the basis of all life on earth and carbon based molecules exists in every one of our cells so why would you think that it is toxic. Claims of fullerene toxicity is due to sloppy chemistry. Researches were despirate to disolve fullerenes and it the solvents that are toxic such as dimethyl sulfoxide (DMSO) or Carbon TetraChoride C-CL4.

C-60 is found in stardust, in meteor impacts sites such as in Sudbury, in shungite rock, in the air after every lightening bolt strike (soot turns to C-60 when hit by lightening) and in molasses.

The first C-60 based drink with Hydrated (or Water-soluble) Fullerenes was discovered and invented by Ukrainian scientists in the 1980's

Walter Derzko

Smart Economy


Walter Derzko
24th April, 2012 @ 09:57 pm PDT

Several exciting potential market applications exist for HyFn’s (as published in peer-reviewed academic journals since 1993) --either as

•a reagent grade solution for experimental lab work sold to other scientists & labs around the world,

•a totally new niche/market of health drinks (as a preventive anti-oxidant, health drink )

•as a health supplement

•for pre-clinical and clinical trials for patients with: 1) cancer metastasis, 2) alcohol addiction, 3) Alzheimer’s, 4) viral and 5) bacterial infections such as HIV, Avian Flu, 6) atherosclerosis activity (blood clots), 7) diabetes, 8) asthma etc any disease that has an inflammatory component in its pathway (and a whole new "extreme" medical tourism market once it gets approval)

•contrast agents for diagnostic imaging

•radio-protective agents in cancer therapy

•topical cosmetics (already on the market in Japan)

•drug delivery /carrier agent for other drugs


•nutraceuticals and programmable foods

•Long term (fullerenes in the water supply like we do this flourides today?)

or for non-medical uses, (which could be brought to market faster) such as

•thin films,


•solar cells

•fullerene based semiconductors,



•super caps

•environmental cleanup

It appears that hydrated fullerenes (HyFn) not only have a curative effect but a preventive effect as well (think new anti-oxidant water drink category with hydrated fullerenes or fullerenes added to the water supply, the way we add chlorine or fluoride to toothpaste today)

HyFn challenge the prevailing notion in medicine, that you need a specific drug which acts on a specific receptor to cure a specific disease. HyFn’s appear to act across a broad universal spectrum of diseases.

The following table was reproduced with the permission of the authors:

Basic biological properties of aqueous solution of the hydrated C60 fullerene

(HyFn) detected to the present time (May 2005)

In vitro experiments revealed that HyFn with C60 concentrations up to 100mM/l:

1. Are non-toxic for cells including hepatocytes;

2. Do not suppress, but promote the growth of isolated micro-organisms (microbes, fungi, etc.) and improve the survival rate and viability of cells

(e.g., frozen-thawed spermatozoa);

3. Do not inhibit cell respiration;

4. Do not suppress membrane-bonded ATP-ase activity;

5. Possess more significant anti-oxidant properties then vitamin E, b-carotene and BHT (2,6-di-tert-butyl-4-kresol);

6. Stabilize cellular membranes and enhance their resistance to adverse conditions;

7. Do not affect blood coagulation;

8. Increase by 5–10 degree C the temperature of biomolecule denaturation (DNA), albumin, collagen and etc.);

9. Increase catalytic activity of isolated enzymes (e.g., serine proteases).

In vivo experiments revealed that HyFn with C60 total doses up to 25mg/kg of b.w.:

1. Are non-toxic, not immunogenic, not allergenic;

2. Increase resistance of plasma membranes to damaging factors;

3. Positive influence on anti-oxidant and energetic systems of organisms;

4. Possess radioprotective properties due to suppression of excess level of free radicals;

5. Possess antihistaminic and allergy-suppressing abilities, i.e., act as anti-inflammatory agents,

6. Positive influence on activity of adrenergic, GABA-, hystaminic- and, especially, serotoninergic systems and, as a consequence, enhance adaptogenic functions of organisms;

7. Show positive neuroprotecting (e.g., Alzheimer’s disease) and non-specific analgesic effects;

8. HyFn's do not kill tumor cells, they inhibit cancer pathology development or metastasis;

9. Possess anti-atherosclerotic (anti-atherogenic) properties;

10. Are able to protect against viral infection (e.g., influenza, etc.): (HyFn do not kill viruses and microbes, but do not allow them to incorporate into cells).

Source: Fullerenes, Nanotubes, and Carbon Nanostructures, 13: 363–376, 2005; Is the C60 Fullerene Molecule Toxic?!

Walter Derzko
24th April, 2012 @ 10:11 pm PDT

BTW it's not the C-60 that has the medical and biological effects, it's the Water molecules that cluster around the fullerenes that produces the biological / medical effects

Walter Derzko
24th April, 2012 @ 10:17 pm PDT

China for those who asked. Was there ever really a wonder where you could get this stuff?

Alan Rodric Sullivan
28th April, 2012 @ 03:54 pm PDT

I read lots of technical data but no testimonials. Is everybody waiting for someone else to be the lab rat? I will try it. At 70 I am fading fast. Just tell me where to buy it.

Don Duncan
30th April, 2012 @ 09:31 pm PDT

Fullerene Water Solution (FWS) is only available in Ukraine. I've been drinking it and it shrunk my residual blood clots below my knee.

Walter Derzko
7th May, 2012 @ 06:37 am PDT

Don Duncan asks...where can I buy it?

You can buy C-60 or buckey balls in any coutry not just China, but they are not water soluble so there is no medical effect. Only Ukraine has water soluble buckeyballs or fullerenes called Hydrated Fullerenes or HyFN-C60 or Fullerene Water Solution (FWS)

Walter Derzko
7th May, 2012 @ 06:42 am PDT

So, the immediate, practical conclusion from this discussion seems to be to add more molasses and olive oil to your diet, while reducing calories in general.

Might not hurt to get more activity/exercise, and plenty of sleep...?

I think I can live (maybe even longer?) with that... LOL

25th May, 2012 @ 09:33 am PDT

does that mean mothers get to take care of their babies till their in their 50's lol.i want to be the guinea pig pick me.ohoh me"hand raised".that would be so freaking cool.

Angela Mcmillan
17th October, 2012 @ 10:55 pm PDT

yep i said it once i will say it again.i want to try it.i want to be here when we have spaceships.i want to go into outerspace.and it will take prolly over the next 50 yrs or so to get that far.i am 42 female,no i dont half to worry about out living my children.if they need to experiment with this drug on a human i volunteer.

Angela Mcmillan
18th October, 2012 @ 07:10 pm PDT

@Thunderbird4: It is totally incorrect that the rats on C60 only lived a few weeks more than the olive oil treated rats.

In fact they lived nearly two years longer, on average, that the oil-only rats:

@Paul Hutchinson: There are several vendors selling it. does and carbon60oliveoil sell it as well.

@MasterG: The object of the study was in fact to test the chronic oral toxicity of Buckminsterfullerene. They were astonished to find that the CC60-treated rats lived nearly twice as long as the control group. So they found an extreme "negative toxicity".

@tkj: I am not sure what you refer to as absurd, but the test did not look at for example the lipid bilayers of the cell or the mitochondria, where it has later been postulated that the lipofullerene could remain for a very long time (half-time equal to that of the lifetime of the mitochondria, but recycled many times.)

@kalqlate: The rats were fed and housed like any other rats used in toxicity studies and were not on a starvation diet. Source: My personal communication with one of the authors.

@Larry Hooten: Buckyballs in air would be clumped, so they would be nanoparticles, which are toxic. Also, the only C60 proven to extend the life of rats so far is oil-dissolved C60, not water-soluble C60, which is toxic in most cases.

@Victor Engel: Firstly, the rats in the study were not poisoned with anything, so they did not need "detoxification". Secondly, how would "detoxification" make an organism live twice as long??

@ralph.dratman: Please don't do that. Candle soot has at most only a few % of C60. The rest is a more or less toxic mixture of countless other carbon compounds, of which the effects on the body are anybody's guess.

@ib42: The chemical name is Buckminsterfullerene, formula C60, named "Buckyballs" after Mr. Buckminster Fuller, the inventor of the geodesic dome. C60's atomic model looks exactly like a soccer ball.

@Walter Derzko: Those Ukranians have been working on Fullerenes for 16 years now, but so far they did not publish any study on small rodents with the Ukranian water-dissolved fullerene product making them live longer. Also, the amount of dissolved C60 in the Ukranian product is Homeopatically minute, and it would be hard to believe it would have much effect on an organism. They claim that the longevity effects in the rat trials were due to tiny traces of C60 dissolved in water in the oil, but they do not bring any evidence for that. There is little water left in oil stirred for two weeks, and without the special sonication process invented by the Ukranian group, nearly no C60 dissolves in that little water anyway.

@Mindbreaker: Centrifuging, filtering and stirring are mechanical operations, not chemical modifications. More specifically, these actions do not modify the oil. Also, the rats had no choice how much to ingest of the plain-oil and c60-oil. It was administered to them.

@Walter Derzko again: Not everything found in nature is safe. Curare isn't, snake venom isn't, etc. There is ample scientific evidence that water-dissolved fullerenes are toxic, since they form toxic nanoparticles. Also the chemical modification of fullerenes to make them water-soluble has been oft-proven to cause toxic effects in certain organisms/organs. As to your: "it's the Water molecules that cluster around the fullerenes": This sounds like Homeopathy, which is quackery. Where is the evidence to your statement? Please stop spamming the entire Internet with fake testimonials and unsubstantiated claims.

@Don Duncan: sells it. Many testimonials were available by dozens of people on the Longecity forum, but positive mentions are now censored. The thread was deleted and merged into two other threads, with the warning that any personal experiences will be deleted. is a forum for people interrested in life extension and dozens of people have been pioneers in taking C60 in extra virgin olive oil. Longecity forum members have reported the following beneficial effects (only effects reported by more than one person are listed):

More energy

Less sleep needed

“Mental inprovements”

Can lift much heavier weights, sometimes to the point of causing tendon injury. Commonly reported.

Can do more reps of the same weight. This was the most commonly reported benefit. People were adamant that there was a great difference, comparable to taking Creatine and that not even anabolic steroids enabled such an immediate increase of both repetitions and max. weight.

Calmer, reduction in stress

Can run longer with seemingly more effective utilization of Oxygen. Less fatigue. “Cardiac improvements”. Better stamina and endurance.

Can run faster whilst feeling more comfortable with a pulse that would normally be too high for steady-state.

Higher libido. This is also seen in rat trials, already with 4 micrograms/kg, a dose five times lower than what we recommend as a daily dose.

Faster recovery of the skin after sunburn (with topical application).

@citizenw: At least nothing in the rat study supports your conclusions. They were not put on a calorie-restricted diet, and the olive oil control group only saw a modest benefit, likely due to the benefits of high-quality extra virgin olive oil.

Sarah Vaughter
1st November, 2012 @ 03:03 am PDT

Seems like the mice fed only on olive oil, did quite well; while those having added buckyballs, survived only a couple of weeks more. Is this an add for health giving properties of olive oil? Perhaps I should buy some shares!


Corey Overhiser
7th December, 2013 @ 01:25 am PST
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