Friday, February 12, 2010

Diet and Longevity

A quick one. This report came up on Science Daily.
The study found that a complex dietary supplement powerfully offsets this key symptom of ageing in old mice by increasing the activity of the cellular furnaces that supply energy -- or mitochondria -- and by reducing emissions from these furnaces -- or free radicals -- that are thought to be the basic cause of ageing itself. The abstract follows.

You can download the full article at this link.

Exp. Biol. Med. 2010;235:66-76
© 2010 Society for Experimental Biology and Medicine 

Dietary amelioration of locomotor, neurotransmitter and mitochondrial aging

Aging degrades motivation, cognition, sensory modalities and physical capacities, essentially dimming zestful living. Bradykinesis (declining physical movement) is a highly reliable biomarker of aging and mortality risk. Mice fed a complex dietary supplement (DSP) designed to ameliorate five mechanisms associated with aging showed no loss of total daily locomotion compared with >50% decrement in old untreated mice. This was associated with boosted striatal neuropeptide Y, reversal of age-related declines in mitochondrial complex III activity in brain andamelioration of oxidative stress (brain protein carbonyls). Supplemented mice expressed ~50% fewer mitochondrial protein carbonyls per unit of complex III activity. Reduction of free radical production by mitochondria may explain the exceptional longevity of birds and dietary restricted animals and no DSP is known to impact this mechanism. Functional benefits greatly exceeded the modest longevity increases documented for supplemented normal mice. Regardless, for aging humans maintaining zestful health and performance into later years may provide greatersocial and economic benefits than simply prolonging lifespan. Although identifying the role of specific ingredients and interactions remains outstanding, results provide proof of principle that complex dietary cocktails can powerfully ameliorate biomarkers of aging and modulate mechanisms considered ultimate goals for aging interventions.

Keywords: aging, locomotion, mitochondria, protein carbonyls, neuropeptide Y, free radicals, energy regulation, growth hormone, mice, dietary supplement

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