Reprinted from yesterday's late editions.
Romania's answer to Ponce de Leon is making one of her periodic visits to Washington. Not to find the fabled fountain of youth, because she would have you believe she did the 25 years ago, but, for what she called "secret, secret" Wednesday at a dinner in her honor.
She didn't look a day older than the last time she was here, which was in 1973. Then she was only 76.
"I don't feel the difference," said Dr. Ana Aslan of her four additional years.
Dr. Aslan discovered, or at least invented - "I have the title of 'inventor,'" she explained between the truue amandine and beef Wellington - the method of using procaine to treat rheumatism, only to find that it had "great effect in the rejuvenation."
That seemingly happy discovery resulted in a "special" procaine (novocaine) which Aslan subsquently called Gerovital H3. "It's more stabilized," she told Rep. Charles A. Vanik (D-Ohio) at a party the Sidney Zlotnicks gave.
Though the money-making potential of the drug held no fascination whatsoever for her - "no, no royalties" and "I'm only interested in the scientific part" - Dr Aslan was nevertheless aware of recent legislation in Nevada which will make the drug available there for the first time in this country despite Food and Drug Administration objections.
"They test it many times and with good results," she said of FDA's investigations, "but they have decided it is not enough. Now, I don't know, since the change in Nevada."
Birch Bayh, the Senate's one-time boy wonder, told Aslan his "business" was the Senate, adding, "I'm afraid I've aged rather rapidly in 15 years."