Evolutionary conservation of regulated longevity assurance mechanisms

McElwee, J.J. et al. (2007) Evolutionary conservation of regulated longevity assurance mechanisms. Genome Biology, 8(7), R132. (doi: 10.1186/gb-2007-8-7-r132)

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<p>Background: To what extent are the determinants of aging in animal species universal? Insulin/insulin-like growth factor (IGF)-1 signaling (IIS) is an evolutionarily conserved (public) regulator of longevity; yet it remains unclear whether the genes and biochemical processes through which IIS acts on aging are public or private (that is, lineage specific). To address this, we have applied a novel, multi-level cross-species comparative analysis to compare gene expression changes accompanying increased longevity in mutant nematodes, fruitflies and mice with reduced IIS.</p> <p>Results: Surprisingly, there is little evolutionary conservation at the level of individual, orthologous genes or paralogous genes under IIS regulation. However, a number of gene categories are significantly enriched for genes whose expression changes in long-lived animals of all three species. Down-regulated categories include protein biosynthesis-associated genes. Up-regulated categories include sugar catabolism, energy generation, glutathione-S-transferases (GSTs) and several other categories linked to cellular detoxification (that is, phase 1 and phase 2 metabolism of xenobiotic and endobiotic toxins). Protein biosynthesis and GST activity have recently been linked to aging and longevity assurance, respectively.</p> <p>Conclusion: These processes represent candidate, regulated mechanisms of longevity-control that are conserved across animal species. The longevity assurance mechanisms via which IIS acts appear to be lineage-specific at the gene level (private), but conserved at the process level (or semi-public). In the case of GSTs, and cellular detoxification generally, this suggests that the mechanisms of aging against which longevity assurance mechanisms act are, to some extent, lineage specific.</p>

Item Type:Articles
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Selman, Professor Colin
Authors: McElwee, J.J., Schuster, E., Blanc, E., Piper, M.D., Thomas, J.H., Patel, D.S., Selman, C., Withers, D.J., Thornton, J.M., Partridge, L., and Gems, D.
College/School:College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > Institute of Biodiversity Animal Health and Comparative Medicine
Journal Name:Genome Biology
Publisher:BioMed Central
Published Online:05 July 2007
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2007 The Authors
First Published:First published in Genome Biology 8(7):R132
Publisher Policy:Reproduced under a Creative Commons License

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