Oct
04
2009

Sirtuins: Silent Information Regulator Two (Sir2) proteins Sirtuins have been implicated in influencing aging and regulating transcription, apoptosis and stress resistance.
Sirtuins: Silent Information Regulator Two (Sir2) proteins Sirtuins have been implicated in influencing aging and regulating transcription, apoptosis and stress resistance.Courtesy Boghog2

Fountain of Youth

Scientists are extending lifespans of mice and primates from 20 to 40 per cent. A protein called S6 Kinase 1 (S6K1), if reduced, resulted in healthier and longer lived organisms.
When University College London (UCL) professor, Dominic Withers, blocked the action of the S6K1 protein in mice he found:

"The mice lived longer and were leaner, more active and generally healthier than the control group. We added 'life to their years' as well as 'years to their lives.
The mice were leaner, had stronger bones, were protected from type 2 diabetes, performed better at motor tasks and demonstrated better senses and cognition, according to the study.

Metformin and Rapamycin

Another molecule related to S6K1 levels known as AMPK was found to regulate energy levels within cells. AMPK levels were effected by drugs called metformin and rapamycin. Recent studies suggest that these two drugs can extend mice's lifespan.

Eat less and live long

Proteins called sirtuins are thought to help the body survive famines. When an animal is not getting enough food, there is a a survival mechanism that kicks in. Chemicals like AMPK and sirtuins enable an increased efficiency and more effective resistance to disease. Now drugs, rather than famine, have been found that activate sirtuin production.

In mice, sirtuin activators are effective against lung and colon cancer, melanoma, lymphoma, Type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease and Alzheimer’s disease, said David Sinclair, a Harvard Medical School researcher and co-founder of Sirtris. The drugs reduce inflammation, and if they have the same effects in people, could help combat many diseases that have an inflammatory component, like irritable bowel syndrome and glaucoma.

Better than wine

A sirtuin activator has been found in some red wines and is known as resveratrol. Sirtris Pharmaceuticals is formulating resveratrol like compounds and is testing them against various diseases.

SRT-501, the company’s special formulation of resveratrol, is being tested against two cancers, multiple myeloma and colon cancer that has spread to the liver. A chemical mimic of resveratrol, known as SRT-2104, is in a Phase 2 trial for Type 2 diabetes, and in a Phase 1 trial in elderly patients.

Sources:
Long Life Gains Scientific Respect New York Times
Scientists find path to 'fountain of youth' Yahoo News

Your Comments, Thoughts, Questions, Ideas

Anonymous's picture
Anonymous says:

I think the fountain of youth is a load of crap. Who wants to live forever and watch everyone they know and love die all around them. I certainly wouldn't want to live forever and be by myself with no one I can actually spend the rest of my life with

posted on Tue, 10/06/2009 - 12:08pm
Anonymous's picture
Anonymous says:

I think it would be cool to find the fountain of youth. you wouldn't have to watch your friends or family die because you could give it to them

posted on Wed, 10/07/2009 - 12:47pm

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