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Effect of Dietary Restriction on Lifespan Explained

Factors mediating enhancement of lifespan and reduction of disease pathology identified

FRIDAY, Nov. 27 (HealthDay News) -- Factors have been identified that explain how dietary restriction increases lifespan and reduces pathology in a model of Alzheimer's disease, according to a study published Nov. 17 in PLoS Biology.

Minhua Zhang and colleagues from Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York City investigated how dietary restriction increases lifespan by examining changes in gene expression in the mouse hypothalamus, which mediates physiological responses to nutritional deprivation.

The researchers found that the transcription factor CBP and associated cofactors were induced by dietary restriction and accounted for 84 percent of lifespan variance. Blocking their expression blocked the ability of dietary restriction to increase lifespan and to reduce pathology in a model of Alzheimer's disease, while drugs that mimicked enhanced CBP activity increased lifespan and reduced Alzheimer's pathology.

"Other factors implicated in lifespan extension are also CBP-binding partners, suggesting that CBP constitutes a common factor in the modulation of lifespan and disease burden by dietary restriction and the insulin/IGF1 signaling pathway," Zhang and colleagues conclude.

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