Molecular Therapy: The Journal of the American Society of Gene Therapy
Methylmalonic acidemia (MMA) is an organic acidemia caused by deficient activity of the mitochondrial enzyme methylmalonyl-CoA mutase (MUT). This disorder is associated with lethal metabolic instability and carries a poor prognosis for long-term survival. A murine model of MMA that replicates a severe clinical phenotype was used to examine the efficacy of recombinant adeno-associated virus (rAAV) serotype 8 gene therapy as a treatment for MMA.
Ames dwarf (Prop1 (df/df) ) mice are remarkably long-lived and exhibit many characteristics of delayed aging and extended healthspan. Caloric restriction (CR) has similar effects on healthspan and lifespan, and causes an extension of longevity in Ames dwarf mice. Our study objective was to determine whether Ames dwarfism or CR influence neuromusculoskeletal function in middle-aged (82 ± 12 weeks old) or old (128 ± 14 w.o.) mice.
Cardiac fibrosis is critically involved in the adverse remodeling accompanying dilated cardiomyopathies (DCMs), which leads to cardiac dysfunction and heart failure (HF). Connective tissue growth factor (CTGF), a profibrotic cytokine, plays a key role in this deleterious process. Some beneficial effects of IGF1 on cardiomyopathy have been described, but its potential role in improving DCM is less well characterized.
Cockayne syndrome (CS) is a rare multisystem disorder characterized by cachectic dwarfism, nervous system abnormalities and features of premature aging. CS symptoms are associated with mutations in 5 genes, CSA, CSB, XPB, XPD and XPG encoding for proteins involved in the transcription-coupled subpathway of nucleotide excision DNA repair (NER). Mutant mice have been generated for all CS-associated genes and provide tools to examine how the cellular defects translate into CS symptoms.
Ames dwarf mice and Snell dwarf mice lack growth hormone (GH), prolactin (PRL), and thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH), live much longer than their normal siblings, and exhibit many symptoms of delayed aging. "Laron dwarf mice," produced by targeted disruption of the GH receptor/GH-binding protein gene (GHR-KO mice), are GH resistant and also live much longer than normal animals from the same line. Isolated GH deficiency in "little" mice is similarly associated with increased life span, provided that obesity is prevented by reducing fat content in the diet.
Biochemical and Biophysical Research Communications
The Agouti-related protein (AgRP) is a central orexigenic peptide leading to increased food intake when ubiquitously overexpressed. AgRP-deficient (AgRP(-/-)) mice have either no phenotype or present an age-related leanness. In this study, AgRP(-/-) mice were fed alternate high fat or low fat diets in an effort to determine whether AgRP is a mediating factor for the effects of dietary fat on metabolic parameters. There were no striking metabolic differences between AgRP(-/-) and the equally obese wild type littermates but AgRP(-/-) mice displayed a significantly longer lifespan.
Caloric restriction (CR) is known to promote longevity in various species. Sirtuin-mediated deacetylation has been shown to be related to the promotion of longevity in some species. Here, we show that CR of rats led to an increase in the level of Werner syndrome protein (WRN), a recognized DNA repair protein. In addition, CR simultaneously increased the level of SIRT1, a mammalian sirtuin. In HEK293T cells, sirtuin inhibitors decreased the WRN level, and this effect was suppressed by proteasomal inhibitors. Furthermore, we found a decrease in the WRN level in Sirt1-deficient mice.
What aging process is delayed by calorie restriction (CR) and mutations that produce long-lived dwarf mice? From 1935 until 1996, CR was the only option for increasing the maximum lifespan of laboratory rodents. In 1996, the mutation producing the Ames dwarf mouse (Prop-1(-/-)) was reported to increase lifespan. Since 1996, other gene mutations that cause dwarfism or lower body weight have been reported to increase the lifespan of mice. The recent discovery of long-lived mutant dwarf mice provides an opportunity to investigate common features between CR and dwarf models.
The mouse has become the favorite mammalian model. Among the many reasons for this privileged position of mice is their genetic proximity to humans, the possibilities of genetically manipulating their genomes and the availability of many tools, mutants and inbred strains. Also in the field of aging, mice have become very robust and reliable research tools.
Restrictive dietary interventions exert significant beneficial physiological effects in terms of aging and age-related disease in many species. Every other day feeding (EOD) has been utilized in aging research and shown to mimic many of the positive outcomes consequent with dietary restriction. This study employed long living Ames dwarf mice subjected to EOD feeding to examine the adaptations of the oxidative phosphorylation and antioxidative defense systems to this feeding regimen.