(From NewsWise). Just occasionally, we need reminding that what "we all know" is not necessarily true - and that goes for scientists too. We all know that skin loses its elasticity with age, and this has been associated with the progression of many age-related conditions (including hardening of the arteries, joint stiffness, cataracts, Alzheimer's and dementia). New research has indicated that the underlying mechanisms are quite different from those previously assumed, however. This explains past failures to find effective therapies and opens the door to a whole new set of research aimed at preventing loss of skin elasticity and associated serious age-related conditions.