Aging is associated with a host of biological changes that contribute to a progressive decline in cognitive and physical function, ultimately leading to a loss of independence, and increased risk of mortality. To date, prolonged caloric restriction (i.e., a reduction in caloric intake without malnutrition) is the only non-genetic intervention that has consistently been found to extend both mean and maximal life span across a variety of species. Most individuals have difficulty sustaining prolonged caloric restriction, which has led to a search for alternative approaches that can produce similar to benefits as caloric restriction. A growing body of evidence indicates that fasting periods and intermittent fasting regimens in particular can trigger similar biological pathways as caloric restriction. For this reason, there is increasing scientific interest in further exploring the biological and metabolic effects of intermittent fasting periods, as well as whether long-term compliance may be improved by this type of dietary approach. This special will highlight the latest scientific findings related to the effects of both caloric restriction and intermittent fasting across various species including yeast, fruit flies, worms, rodents, primates, and humans. A specific emphasis is placed on translational research with findings from basic bench to bedside reviewed and practical clinical implications discussed.
Post-traumatic knee osteoarthritis is prevalent after anterior cruciate ligament reconstruction. Biomarkers that identify individuals likely to develop osteoarthritis, especially symptomatic osteoarthritis, can help target preventative and therapeutic strategies. This study examined the magnitude and change over time in urinary CTX-II (uCTX-II) concentrations shortly after ACL reconstruction, and, secondarily, the associations with knee pain and function.
Subjects were 28 patients with ACL reconstruction (ACLR) and 28 age- and sex-matched controls (CNTRL). Testing was conducted at 4 time points spaced 4 weeks apart (4, 8, 12 and 16 weeks post-operative in ACLR). Measures included demographics, urine samples, Numeric Pain Rating Scale (NPRS) and International Knee Documentation Committee Subjective Knee Form (IKDC-SKF). uCTX-II concentrations were determined with competitive ELISA. uCTX-II concentrations at each time point in ACLR were compared to the mean concentration over time in CNTRL, with and without adjustment for body mass index (BMI). Changes over time in each measure and correlations between the slopes of change were examined.
uCTX-II concentrations were significantly higher in ACLR than CNTRL through 16 weeks post-operative when adjusted for BMI. In ACLR, uCTX-II concentrations significantly decreased over time, and the slope was associated with NPRS (r =.406, p=.039) and IKDC-SKF (r = −.402, p = .034) slopes.
uCTX-II concentrations shortly after ACL reconstruction were elevated compared to controls and declined over time. Decreasing uCTX-II concentrations were associated with decreasing knee pain and improving function. uCTX-II may have a role as a prognostic marker following ACL reconstruction and warrants further investigation.
During the aging process, an accumulation of non-heme iron disrupts cellular homeostasis and contributes to the mitochondrial dysfunction typical of various neuromuscular degenerative diseases. Few studies have investigated the effects of iron accumulation on mitochondrial integrity and function in skeletal muscle and liver tissue. Thus, we isolated liver mitochondria (LM), as well as quadriceps-derived subsarcolemmal mitochondria (SSM) and interfibrillar mitochondria (IFM), from male Fischer 344× Brown Norway rats at 8, 18, 29 and 37 months of age. Non-heme iron content in SSM, IFM and LM was significantly higher with age, reaching a maximum at 37 months of age. The mitochondrial permeability transition pore (mPTP) was more susceptible to the opening in aged mitochondria containing high levels of iron (i.e. SSM and LM) compared to IFM. Furthermore, mitochondrial RNA oxidation increased significantly with age in SSM and LM, but not in IFM. Levels of mitochondrial RNA oxidation in SSM and LM correlated positively with levels of mitochondrial iron, whereas a significant negative correlation was observed between the maximum Ca2+ amounts needed to induce mPTP opening and iron contents in SSM, IFM and LM. Overall, our data suggest that age-dependent accumulation of mitochondrial iron may increase mitochondrial dysfunction and oxidative damage, thereby enhancing the susceptibility to apoptosis.
mitochondrial aging; mitochondrial iron homeostasis; mitochondrial permeability transition pore; mitochondrial RNA; oxidative stress; skeletal muscle subsarcolemmal and interfibrillar mitochondria
Sarcopenia, the age-related loss of skeletal muscle mass, is a significant public health concern that continues to grow in relevance as the population ages. Certain conditions have the strong potential to coincide with sarcopenia to accelerate the progression of muscle atrophy in older adults. Among these conditions are co-morbid diseases common to older individuals such as cancer, kidney disease, diabetes, and peripheral artery disease. Furthermore, behaviors such as poor nutrition and physical inactivity are well-known to contribute to sarcopenia development. However, we argue that these behaviors are not inherent to the development of sarcopenia but rather accelerate its progression. In the present review, we discuss how these factors affect systemic and cellular mechanisms that contribute to skeletal muscle atrophy. In addition, we describe gaps in the literature concerning the role of these factors in accelerating sarcopenia progression. Elucidating biochemical pathways related to accelerated muscle atrophy may allow for improved discovery of therapeutic treatments related to sarcopenia.
Aging; Proteolysis; Satellite Cells; HIV; COPD; Disability
Age-related loss of muscle mass and strength (sarcopenia) leads to a decline in physical function and frailty in the elderly. Among the many proposed underlying causes of sarcopenia, mitochondrial dysfunction is inherent in a variety of aged tissues. The intent of this study was to examine the effect of aging on key groups of regulatory proteins involved in mitochondrial biogenesis and how this relates to physical performance in two groups of sedentary elderly participants, classified as high- and low-functioning based on the Short Physical Performance Battery test. Muscle mass was decreased by 38% and 30% in low-functioning elderly (LFE) participants when compared to young and high-functioning elderly (HFE) participants, respectively, and positively correlated to physical performance. Mitochondrial respiration in permeabilized muscle fibers was reduced (41%) in the LFE group when compared to the young, and this was associated with a 30% decline in COX activity. Levels of key metabolic regulators, SIRT3 and PGC-1α were significantly reduced (50%) in both groups of elderly participants when compared to young. Similarly, the fusion protein OPA1 was lower in muscle from elderly subjects, however no changes were detected in Mfn2, Drp1 or Fis1 among the groups. In contrast, protein import machinery (PIM) components Tom22 and cHsp70 were increased in the LFE group when compared to the young. This study suggests that aging in skeletal muscle is associated with impaired mitochondrial function and altered biogenesis pathways, and that this may contribute to muscle atrophy and the decline in muscle performance observed in the elderly population.
aging; sarcopenia; mitochondria; skeletal muscle; PGC-1α
Recent scientific studies have advanced the notion of chronic inflammation as a major risk factor underlying aging and age-related diseases. In this review, low-grade, unresolved, molecular inflammation is described as an underlying mechanism of aging and age-related diseases, which may serve as a bridge between normal aging and age-related pathological processes. Accumulated data strongly suggest that continuous (chronic) up-regulation of pro-inflammatory mediators (e.g., TNF-α, IL-1β, 6, COX-2, iNOS) are induced during the aging process due to an age-related redox imbalance that activates many pro-inflammatory signaling pathways, including the NF-κB signaling pathway. These pro-inflammatory molecular events are discussed in relation to their role as basic mechanisms underlying aging and age-related diseases. Further, the anti-inflammatory actions of aging-retarding caloric restriction and exercise are reviewed. Thus, the purpose of this review is to describe the molecular roles of age-related physiological functional declines and the accompanying chronic diseases associated with aging. This new view on the role of molecular inflammation as a mechanism of aging and age-related pathogenesis can provide insights into potential interventions that may affect the aging process and reduce age-related diseases, thereby promoting healthy longevity.
molecular inflammation; aging; calorie restriction; exercise; cytokines; oxidative stress; inflammatory diseases; age-related diseases; obesity; sarcopenia; dementia; atherosclerosis; cancer; osteoporosis
Botanicals represent an important and underexplored source of potential new therapies that may facilitate caloric restriction and thereby produce long-term weight loss. In particular, one promising botanical that may reduce food intake and body weight by affecting neuroendocrine pathways related to satiety is Garcinia cambogia (Garcinia cambogia Desr.)-derived (−)-hydroxycitric acid (HCA).
Methods and Design
The objective of this article is to describe the protocol of a clinical trial designed to directly test the effect that Garcinia cambogia-derived HCA has on food intake, satiety, weight loss, and oxidative stress levels, and to serve as a model for similar trials. A total of 48 healthy, overweight and obese individuals (body mass index; BMI range = 25.0 – 39.9) between the ages of 50 to 70 will participate in this double-blind, placebo-controlled, crossover study designed to examine the effects of two doses of Garcinia cambogia-derived HCA on food intake, satiety, weight loss, and oxidative stress levels. This trial will take place at the University of Florida (UF)’s Aging and Rehabilitation Research Center (ARRC) and UF Clinical Research Center (CRC). Food intake represents the primary outcome measure and is calculated based on the total calories consumed at breakfast, lunch, and dinner meals during each test meal day at the CRC. This study can be completed with far fewer subjects than a parallel design.
Of the numerous botanical compounds, the compound Garcinia cambogia-derived HCA was selected for testing in the present study because of its potential to safely reduce food intake, body weight, and oxidative stress levels. We will review potential mechanisms of action and safety parameters throughout this clinical trial, which is registered at ClinicalTrials.gov under NCT01238887.
ClinicalTrials.gov (Identifier: NCT01238887).
Obesity; Botanicals; Weight Loss; Garcinia Cambogia; hydroxycitric acid; dietary supplement
Aging affects mitochondria in a tissue-specific manner. Calorie restriction (CR) is, so far, the only intervention able to delay or prevent the onset of several age-related changes also in mitochondria. Using livers from middle age (18-month-old), 28-month-old and 32-month-old ad libitum-fed and 28-month-old calorie-restricted rats we found an age-related decrease in mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) content and mitochondrial transcription factor A (TFAM) amount, fully prevented by CR. We revealed also an age-related decrease, completely prevented by CR, for the proteins PGC-1α NRF-1 and cytochrome c oxidase subunit IV, supporting the efficiency of CR to forestall the age-related decrease in mitochondrial biogenesis. Furthermore, CR counteracted the age-related increase in oxidative damage to proteins, represented by the increased amount of oxidized peroxiredoxins (PRX-SO3) in the ad libitum-fed animals. An unexpected age-related decrease in the mitochondrial proteins peroxiredoxin III (Prx III) and superoxide dismutase 2 (SOD2), usually induced by increased ROS and involved in mitochondrial biogenesis, suggested a prevailing relevance of the age-reduced mitochondrial biogenesis above the induction by ROS in the regulation of expression of these genes with aging. The partial prevention of the decrease in Prx III and SOD2 proteins by CR also supported the preservation of mitochondrial biogenesis in the anti-aging action of CR. To investigate further the age- and CR-related effects on mitochondrial biogenesis we analyzed the in vivo binding of TFAM to specific mtDNA regions and demonstrated a marked increase in the TFAM-bound amounts of mtDNA at both origins of replication with aging, fully prevented by CR. A novel, positive correlation between the paired amounts of TFAM-bound mtDNA at these sub-regions was found in the joined middle age ad libitum-fed and 28-month-old calorie-restricted groups, but not in the 28-month-old ad libitum-fed counterpart suggesting a quite different modulation of TFAM binding at both origins of replication in aging and CR.
Mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) mutations lead to decrements in mitochondrial function and accelerated rates of these mutations has been linked to skeletal muscle loss (sarcopenia). The purpose of this study was to investigate the effect of mtDNA mutations on mitochondrial quality control processes in skeletal muscle from animals (young; 3–6 months and older; 8–15 months) expressing a proofreading-deficient version of mtDNA polymerase gamma (PolG). This progeroid aging model exhibits elevated mtDNA mutation rates, mitochondrial dysfunction, and a premature aging phenotype that includes sarcopenia. We found increased expression of the mitochondrial biogenesis regulator peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor gamma coactivator-1α (PGC-1α) and its target proteins, nuclear respiratory factor 1 (NRF-1) and mitochondrial transcription factor A (Tfam) in PolG animals compared to wild-type (WT) (P<0.05). Muscle from older PolG animals displayed higher mitochondrial fission protein 1 (Fis1) concurrent with greater induction of autophagy, as indicated by changes in Atg5 and p62 protein content (P<0.05). Additionally, levels of the Tom22 import protein were higher in PolG animals when compared to WT (P<0.05). In contrast, muscle from normally-aged animals exhibited a distinctly different expression profile compared to PolG animals. Older WT animals appeared to have higher fusion (greater Mfn1/Mfn2, and lower Fis1) and lower autophagy (Beclin-1 and p62) compared to young WT suggesting that autophagy is impaired in aging muscle. In conclusion, muscle from mtDNA mutator mice display higher mitochondrial fission and autophagy levels that likely contribute to the sarcopenic phenotype observed in premature aging and this differs from the response observed in normally-aged muscle.
The prevalence of cardiovascular disease (CVD) increases with advancing age. While the long-term exposure to cardiovascular risk factors plays a major role in the etiopathogenesis of CVD, intrinsic cardiac aging enhances the susceptibility to developing heart pathologies in late life. The progressive decline of cardiomyocyte mitochondrial function is considered to be a major mechanism underlying heart senescence. Damaged mitochondria not only produce less ATP, but also generate increased amounts of reactive oxygen species (ROS) and display a greater propensity to trigger apoptosis. Given the post-mitotic nature of cardiomyocytes, the efficient removal of dysfunctional mitochondria is critical for the maintenance of cell homeostasis, as damaged organelles cannot be diluted by cell proliferation. The only known mechanism whereby mitochondria are turned over is through macroautophagy (MA). The efficiency of this process declines with advancing age which may play a critical role in heart senescence as well as in age-related CVD. This review illustrates the putative mechanisms whereby alterations in the autophagic removal of damaged mitochondria intervene in the process of cardiac aging as well as in the pathogenesis of specific heart diseases especially prevalent in late life (e.g., left ventricular hypertrophy, ischemic heart disease, heart failure, and diabetic cardiomyopathy). Interventions proposed to counter cardiac aging through improvements in MA (e.g., calorie restriction and calorie restriction mimetics) are also presented.
heart senescence; mitophagy; oxidative stress; resveratrol; calorie restriction
The lower extremities are important to performing physical activities of daily life. This study investigated lower extremity tissue composition, i.e. muscle and fat volumes, in young and older adults and the relative importance of individual tissue compartments to the physical function of older adults. A total of 43 older (age 78.3 ± 5.6 yr) and 20 younger (age 23.8 ± 3.9 yr) healthy men and women participated in the study. Older participants were further classified as either high- (HF) or low-functioning (LF) according to the Short Physical Performance Battery (SPPB). Magnetic resonance images were used to determine the volumes of skeletal muscle, subcutaneous fat (SAT), and intermuscular fat (IMAT) in the thigh (femoral) and calf (tibiofibular) regions. After adjusting for the sex of participants, younger participants had more femoral muscle mass than older adults (p < 0.001 for between group differences) as well as less femoral IMAT (p = 0.008) and tibiofibular IMAT (p < 0.001). Femoral muscle was the only tissue compartment demonstrating a significant difference between the two older groups, with HF participants having 31% more femoral muscle mass than LF participants (mean difference = 103.0 ± 34.0 cm3; p = 0.011). In subsequent multiple regression models including tissue compartments and demographic confounders, femoral muscle was the primary compartment associated with both SPPB score (r2 = 0.264, p= 0.001) and 4-meter gait speed (r2 = 0.187, p= 0.007). These data suggest that aging affects all lower extremity compartments, but femoral muscle mass is the major compartment associated with physical function in older adults.
Aging; Sarcopenia; Older Adults; Disability; SPPB; IMAT
Caloric restriction and physical exercise have proven beneficial against age-associated changes in body composition and declining physical performance; however, little is known regarding what benefit these interventions might have when initiated late in life. The study of mimetics of diet and exercise and the combination thereof may provide additional treatments for a vulnerable elderly population; however, how and when to initiate such interventions requires consideration in developing the most safe and efficacious treatment strategies. In this review, we focus on preclinical late-life intervention studies, which assess the relationship between physical function, sarcopenia, and body composition. We provide a conceptual framework for the ever-changing definition of sarcopenia and a rationale for the use of an appropriate rodent model of this condition. We finish by providing our perspective regarding the implications of this body of work and future areas of research that may also contribute to the ultimate goal of extending healthspan.
Renin angiotensin system; Enalapril repamycin; Physical function; Body composition
Asteady increase in life expectancy has resulted in an equivalent increase in elderly patients who are more susceptible to diseases than young patients. In a recent study, we found that in both in vitro and in vivo models of ischemia/reperfusion (I/R), a loss of ATG4B is causatively associated with the increased sensitivity of the liver to I/R injury with age. Our work suggests that a restoration or enhancement of autophagy is a novel therapeutic modality to ameliorate liver function after I/R to aged livers.
ischemia; reperfusion; liver; autophagy; aging; mitochondria
BACKGROUND & AIMS
As life expectancy increases, there are greater numbers of patients with liver diseases that require surgery or transplantation. Livers of older patients have significantly less reparative capacity following ischemia and reperfusion (I/R) injury, which occurs during these operations. There are no strategies to reduce the age-dependent I/R injury. We investigated the role of autophagy in the age dependence of sensitivity to I/R injury.
Hepatocytes and livers from 3- and 26-month–old mice were subjected to in vitro and in vivo I/R, respectively. We analyzed changes in autophagy-related proteins (Atg). Mitochondrial dysfunction was visualized using confocal and intravital multiphoton microscopy of isolated hepatocytes and livers from anesthetized mice, respectively.
Immunoblot, autophagic flux, genetic, and imaging analyses all associated the increase in sensitivity to I/R injury with age with decreased autophagy and subsequent mitochondrial dysfunction, due to calpain-mediated loss of Atg4B. Overexpression of either Atg4B or Beclin-1 recovered Atg4B, increased autophagy, blocked the onset of the mitochondrial permeability transition, and suppressed cell death after I/R in old hepatocytes. Co-immunoprecipitation analysis of hepatocytes and Atg3-knockout cells demonstrated an interaction between Beclin-1 and Atg3, a protein required for autophagosome formation. Intravital multiphoton imaging revealed that overexpression of Beclin-1 or Atg4B attenuated autophagic defects and mitochondrial dysfunction in livers of older mice after I/R.
Loss of Atg4B in livers of old mice increases their sensitivity to I/R injury. Increasing autophagy might ameliorate liver damage and restore mitochondrial function after I/R.
MPT; mouse model; aging; liver injury
Mitochondrial biogenesis is essential for cell viability. Growth hormone receptor knockout (GHRKO), calorie restriction, and surgical visceral fat removal constitute experimental interventions to delay aging and increase life span. We examined the expression of known regulators of mitochondriogenesis: peroxisome proliferator–activated receptor γ co-activator 1α (PGC-1α), adenosine monophosphate (AMP)–activated protein kinase (AMPK), sirtuin-1 (SIRT-1) and sirtuin-3 (SIRT-3), endothelial nitric oxide synthase (eNOS), nuclear respiratory factor-1, mitochondrial transcription factor A (TFAM), and mitofusin-2 (MFN-2) in the skeletal muscles and hearts of control and calorie-restricted female GHRKO mice and in the kidneys of male GHRKOs after visceral fat removal or sham surgery. Expression of PGC-1α in skeletal muscles, AMPK, SIRT-1, SIRT-3, eNOS, and MFN-2 in the heart and PGC-1α, AMPK, SIRT-3, eNOS, and MFN-2 in kidneys was increased in GHRKO mice but was not affected by calorie restriction or visceral fat removal. GHRKO mice have increased expression of key regulators of mitochondriogenesis, which is not improved further by calorie restriction or visceral fat removal.
GHRKO mice; Mitochondrial biogenesis; Gene expression; Calorie restriction; Visceral fat removal
Preclinical studies strongly suggest that accelerated apoptosis in skeletal myocytes may be involved in the pathogenesis of sarcopenia. However, evidence in humans is sparse. In the present study, we investigated whether apoptotic signaling in the skeletal muscle was associated with indices of muscle mass and function in older persons.
Community-dwelling older adults were categorized into high-functioning (HF) or low-functioning (LF) groups according to their short physical performance battery (SPPB) summary score. Participants underwent an isokinetic knee extensor strength test and 3-dimensional magnetic resonance imaging of the thigh. Vastus lateralis muscle samples were obtained by percutaneous needle biopsy and assayed for the expression of a set of apoptotic signaling proteins. Age, sex, number of comorbid conditions and medications as well as knee extensor strength were not different between groups. HF participants displayed greater thigh muscle volume compared with LF persons. Multivariate partial least squares (PLS) regressions showed significant correlations between caspase-dependent apoptotic signaling proteins and the muscular percentage of thigh volume (R2 = 0.78; Q2 = 0.61) as well as gait speed (R2 = 0.81; Q2 = 0.56). Significant variables in the PLS model of percent muscle volume were active caspase-8, cleaved caspase-3, cytosolic cytochrome c and mitochondrial Bak. The regression model of gait speed was mainly described by cleaved caspase-3 and mitochondrial Bax and Bak. PLS predictive apoptotic variables did not differ between functional groups. No correlation was determined between apoptotic signaling proteins and muscle strength or quality (strength per unit volume).
Data from this exploratory study show for the first time that apoptotic signaling is correlated with indices of muscle mass and function in a cohort of community-dwelling older persons. Future larger-scale studies are needed to corroborate these preliminary findings and determine if down-regulation of apoptotic signaling in skeletal myocytes will provide improvements in the muscle mass and functional status of older persons.
Chronic pain conditions are characterized by significant individual variability complicating the identification of pathophysiological markers. Leukocyte telomere length (TL), a measure of cellular aging, is associated with age-related disease onset, psychosocial stress, and health-related functional decline. Psychosocial stress has been associated with the onset of chronic pain and chronic pain is experienced as a physical and psychosocial stressor. However, the utility of TL as a biological marker reflecting the burden of chronic pain and psychosocial stress has not yet been explored.
The relationship between chronic pain, stress, and TL was analyzed in 36 ethnically diverse, older adults, half of whom reported no chronic pain and the other half had chronic knee osteoarthritis (OA) pain. Subjects completed a physical exam, radiographs, health history, and psychosocial questionnaires. Blood samples were collected and TL was measured by quantitative polymerase chain reaction (qPCR). Four groups were identified characterized by pain status and the Perceived Stress Scale scores: 1) no pain/low stress, 2) no pain/high stress, chronic pain/low stress, and 4) chronic pain/high stress. TL differed between the pain/stress groups (p = 0.01), controlling for relevant covariates. Specifically, the chronic pain/high stress group had significantly shorter TL compared to the no pain/low stress group. Age was negatively correlated with TL, particularly in the chronic pain/high stress group (p = 0.03).
Although preliminary in nature and based on a modest sample size, these findings indicate that cellular aging may be more pronounced in older adults experiencing high levels of perceived stress and chronic pain.
Chronic pain; Perceived stress; Knee osteoarthritis; Telomere length; Cellular aging
Resistance exercise performed at low loads (20-30% of maximal strength) with blood flow restriction (BFR) acutely increases protein synthesis and induces hypertrophy when performed chronically. We investigated myogenic and proteolytic mRNA expression 8 hrs following an acute bout of knee extension exercise
Fifteen subjects (22.8 ± 3.7 yrs, 8 men and 7 women) were randomized to two exercise conditions: BFR or control exercise. All participants performed 4 sets of exercise (30, 15, 15 & 15 repetitions) at 20% of maximal strength. Persons in the BFR group had a cuff placed on the upper thigh inflated to 1.5 times brachial systolic blood pressure (cuff pressure range: 135-186 mmHg). Muscle biopsies from the vastus lateralis were excised 24 hrs before and 8 hrs following the exercise.
RT-PCR analysis demonstrated no change in myogenic gene expression (IGF-1, MyoD, Myogenin, Myostatin – a negative regulator) with either exercise condition (p > 0.123). However, BFR exercise downregulated mRNA expression in transcripts associated with proteolytic pathways (FOXO3A, Atrogin-1 and MuRF-1) with no change in the control exercise condition. Specifically, median mRNA expression of FOXO3A decreased by 1.92 fold (p = 0.01), Atrogin-1 by 2.10 fold (p = 0.01) and MuRF-1 by 2.44 fold (p = 0.01).
These data are consistent with the downregulation of proteolytic transcripts observed following high load resistance exercise. In summary, myogenic genes are unchanged and proteolytic genes associated with muscle remodeling are reduced 8 hours following low load BFR exercise.
KAATSU; Blood flow restriction; gene expression; mRNA; muscle
Aging is associated with disturbances in iron metabolism and storage. During the last decade, remarkable progress has been made toward understanding their cellular and molecular mechanisms in aging and age-associated diseases using both cultured cells and animal models. The field has moved beyond descriptive studies to potential intervention studies focusing on iron chelation and removal. However, some findings remain controversial and inconsistent. This review summarizes important features of iron dyshomeostasis in aging research with a particular emphasis on current knowledge of the mechanisms underlying age-associated disorders in rodent models.
labile iron; iron accumulation; oxidative damage; mitochondrial dysfunction; aging
Hydrogen sulfide gas (H2S) is a putative signaling molecule that causes diverse effects in mammalian tissues including relaxation of blood vessels and regulation of perfusion in the liver, but the effects of aging on H2S signaling are unknown. Aging has negative impacts on the cardiovascular system. However, the liver is more resilient with age. Caloric restriction (CR) attenuates affects of age in many tissues. We hypothesized that the H2S signaling system is negatively affected by age in the vasculature but not in the liver, which is typically more resilient to age, and that a CR diet minimizes the age affect in the vasculature. To investigate this, we determined protein and mRNA expression of the H2S-producing enzymes cystathionine γ-lyase (CSE) and cystathionine β-synthase (CBS), H2S production rates in the aorta and liver, and the contractile response of aortic rings to exogenous H2S. Tissue was collected from Fisher 344 × Brown Norway rats from 8–38 months of age, which had been maintained on an ad libitum (AL) or CR diet. The results demonstrate that age and diet have differential effects on the H2S signaling system in aorta and liver. The aorta showed a sizeable effect of both age and diet, whereas the liver only showed a sizeable effect of diet. Aortic rings showed increased contractile sensitivity to H2S and increased protein expression of CSE and CBS with age, consistent with a decrease in H2S concentration with age. CR appears to benefit CSE and CBS protein in both aorta and liver, potentially by reducing oxidative stress and ameliorating the negative effect of age on H2S concentration. Therefore, CR may help maintain the H2S signaling system during aging.
H2S; Gasotransmitter; Aging; Caloric restriction; Aorta; Liver
Caloric restriction (CR) extends the lifespan and healthspan of a variety of species, and slows the progression of age-related hearing loss (AHL), a common age-related disorder associated with oxidative stress. Here we report that CR reduces oxidative DNA damage in multiple tissues and prevents AHL in wild-type mice, but fails to modify these phenotypes in mice lacking the mitochondrial deacetylase Sirt3, a member of the sirtuin family. In response to CR, Sirt3 directly deacetylates and activates mitochondrial isocitrate dehydrogenase 2 (Idh2), leading to increased NADPH levels and an increased ratio of reduced to oxidized glutathione in mitochondria. In cultured cells, overexpression of Sirt3 and/or Idh2 increases NADPH levels and protects from oxidative stress-induced cell death. Therefore, our findings identify Sirt3 as an essential player in enhancing the mitochondrial glutathione antioxidant defense system during CR, and suggest that Sirt3-dependent mitochondrial adaptations may be a central mechanism of aging retardation in mammals.
caloric restriction; Sirt3; age-related hearing loss; oxidative stress; ROS; glutathione; isocitrate dehydrogenase 2; NADPH; mitochondria
A primary focus of longevity research is to identify prognostic risk factors that can be mediated by early treatment efforts. To date, much of this work has focused on understanding the biological processes that may contribute to aging process and age-related disease conditions. Although such processes are undoubtedly important, no current biological intervention aimed at increasing health and lifespan exists. Interestingly, a close relationship between mobility performance and the aging process has been documented in older adults. For example, recent studies have identified functional status, as assessed by walking speed, as a strong predictor of major health outcomes, including mortality, in older adults. This paper aims to describe the relationship between the comorbidities related to decreased health and lifespan and mobility function in obese, older adults. Concurrently, lifestyle interventions, including diet and exercise, are described as a means to improve mobility function and thereby limit the functional limitations associated with increased mortality.
labile iron; iron accumulation; iron overload; mitochondrial dysfunction; aging
Obesity and a sedentary lifestyle are associated with physical impairments and biologic changes in older adults. Weight loss combined with exercise may reduce inflammation and improve physical functioning in overweight, sedentary, older adults. This study tested whether a weight loss program combined with moderate exercise could improve physical function in obese, older adult women.
Participants (N = 34) were generally healthy, obese, older adult women (age range 55–79 years) with mild to moderate physical impairments (ie, functional limitations). Participants were randomly assigned to one of two groups for 24 weeks: (i) weight loss plus exercise (WL+E; n = 17; mean age = 63.7 years [4.5]) or (ii) educational control (n = 17; mean age = 63.7 [6.7]). In the WL+E group, participants attended a group-based weight management session plus three supervised exercise sessions within their community each week. During exercise sessions, participants engaged in brisk walking and lower-body resistance training of moderate intensity. Participants in the educational control group attended monthly health education lectures on topics relevant to older adults. Outcomes were: (i) body weight, (ii) walking speed (assessed by 400-meter walk test), (iii) the Short Physical Performance Battery (SPPB), and (iv) knee extension isokinetic strength.
Participants randomized to the WL+E group lost significantly more weight than participants in the educational control group (5.95 [0.992] vs 0.23 [0.99] kg; P < 0.01). Additionally, the walking speed of participants in the WL+E group significantly increased compared with that of the control group (reduction in time on the 400-meter walk test = 44 seconds; P < 0.05). Scores on the SPPB improved in both the intervention and educational control groups from pre- to post-test (P < 0.05), with significant differences between groups (P = 0.02). Knee extension strength was maintained in both groups.
Our findings suggest that a lifestyle-based weight loss program consisting of moderate caloric restriction plus moderate exercise can produce significant weight loss and improve physical function while maintaining muscle strength in obese, older adult women with mild to moderate physical impairments.
obesity; weight loss; physical function; oxidative stress; inflammation; walking speed