bims-senagi Biomed News
on Senescence and aging
Issue of 2021‒09‒12
forty-three papers selected by
Maria Grazia Vizioli
Mayo Clinic

  1. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2021 Sep 14. pii: e2011226118. [Epub ahead of print]118(37):
      Alzheimer's disease (AD) is a progressive and fatal neurodegenerative disorder. Impaired neuronal bioenergetics and neuroinflammation are thought to play key roles in the progression of AD, but their interplay is not clear. Nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (NAD+) is an important metabolite in all human cells in which it is pivotal for multiple processes including DNA repair and mitophagy, both of which are impaired in AD neurons. Here, we report that levels of NAD+ are reduced and markers of inflammation increased in the brains of APP/PS1 mutant transgenic mice with beta-amyloid pathology. Treatment of APP/PS1 mutant mice with the NAD+ precursor nicotinamide riboside (NR) for 5 mo increased brain NAD+ levels, reduced expression of proinflammatory cytokines, and decreased activation of microglia and astrocytes. NR treatment also reduced NLRP3 inflammasome expression, DNA damage, apoptosis, and cellular senescence in the AD mouse brains. Activation of cyclic GMP-AMP synthase (cGAS) and stimulator of interferon genes (STING) are associated with DNA damage and senescence. cGAS-STING elevation was observed in the AD mice and normalized by NR treatment. Cell culture experiments using microglia suggested that the beneficial effects of NR are, in part, through a cGAS-STING-dependent pathway. Levels of ectopic (cytoplasmic) DNA were increased in APP/PS1 mutant mice and human AD fibroblasts and down-regulated by NR. NR treatment induced mitophagy and improved cognitive and synaptic functions in APP/PS1 mutant mice. Our findings suggest a role for NAD+ depletion-mediated activation of cGAS-STING in neuroinflammation and cellular senescence in AD.
    Keywords:  Alzheimer’s disease; DNA repair; NAD supplementation; inflammation; neurodegeneration
  2. Ageing Res Rev. 2021 Sep 06. pii: S1568-1637(21)00205-1. [Epub ahead of print] 101458
      Cellular senescence is a stress response, which can be evoked in all type of somatic cells by different stimuli. Senescent cells accumulate in the body and participate in aging and aging-related diseases mainly by their secretory activity, commonly known as senescence-associated secretory phenotype-SASP. Senescence is typically described as cell cycle arrest. This definition stems from the original observation concerning limited cell division potential of human fibroblasts in vitro. At present, the process of cell senescence is attributed also to cancer cells and to non-proliferating post-mitotic cells. Many cellular signaling pathways and specific and unspecific markers contribute to the complex, dynamic and heterogeneous phenotype of senescent cells. Considering the diversity of cells that can undergo senescence upon different inducers and variety of mechanisms involved in the execution of this process, we ask if there is a common signature of cell senescence. It seems that cell cycle arrest in G0, G1 or G2 is indispensable for cell senescence; however, to ensure irreversibility of divisions, the exit from the cell cycle to the state, which we call a GS (Gero Stage), is necessary. The DNA damage, changes in nuclear architecture and chromatin rearrangement are involved in signaling pathways leading to altered gene transcription and secretion of SASP components. Thus, nuclear changes and SASP are vital features of cell senescence that, together with temporal arrest in the cell cycle (G1 or/and G2), which may be followed by polyploidisation/depolyploidisation or exit from the cell cycle leading to permanent proliferation arrest (GS), define the signature of cellular senescence.
    Keywords:  aging; atypical cell divisions; autophagy; cell cycle; cellular senescence; chromatin reorganization; nuclear structure, polyploidisation; senescence-associated secretory phenotype
  3. Biogerontology. 2021 Sep 06.
      An intricate relationship between impaired immune functions and the age-related accumulation of tissue senescent cells is rapidly emerging. The immune system is unique as it undergoes mutually inclusive and deleterious processes of immunosenescence and cellular senescence with advancing age. While factors inducing immunosenescence and cellular senescence may be shared, however, both these processes are fundamentally different which holistically influence the aging immune system. Our understanding of the biological impact of immunosenescence is relatively well-understood, but such knowledge regarding cellular senescence in immune cells, especially in the innate immune cells such as macrophages, is only beginning to be elucidated. Tissue-resident macrophages are long-lived, and while functioning in tissue-specific and niche-specific microenvironments, senescence in macrophages can be directly influenced by senescent host cells which may impact organismal aging. In addition, evidence of age-associated immunometabolic changes as drivers of altered macrophage phenotype and functions such as inflamm-aging is also emerging. The present review describes the emerging impact of cellular senescence vis-à-vis immunosenescence in aging macrophages, its biological relevance with other senescent non-immune cells, and known immunometabolic regulators. Gaps in our present knowledge, as well as strategies aimed at understanding cellular senescence and its therapeutics in the context of macrophages, have been reviewed.
    Keywords:  Aging; Immunometabolism; Immunosenescence; Macrophages; Senescence
  4. Bone Res. 2021 Sep 10. 9(1): 41
      Emerging insights into cellular senescence highlight the relevance of senescence in musculoskeletal disorders, which represent the leading global cause of disability. Cellular senescence was initially described by Hayflick et al. in 1961 as an irreversible nondividing state in in vitro cell culture studies. We now know that cellular senescence can occur in vivo in response to various stressors as a heterogeneous and tissue-specific cell state with a secretome phenotype acquired after the initial growth arrest. In the past two decades, compelling evidence from preclinical models and human data show an accumulation of senescent cells in many components of the musculoskeletal system. Cellular senescence is therefore a defining feature of age-related musculoskeletal disorders, and targeted elimination of these cells has emerged recently as a promising therapeutic approach to ameliorate tissue damage and promote repair and regeneration of the skeleton and skeletal muscles. In this review, we summarize evidence of the role of senescent cells in the maintenance of bone homeostasis during childhood and their contribution to the pathogenesis of chronic musculoskeletal disorders, including osteoporosis, osteoarthritis, and sarcopenia. We highlight the diversity of the senescent cells in the microenvironment of bone, joint, and skeletal muscle tissue, as well as the mechanisms by which these senescent cells are involved in musculoskeletal diseases. In addition, we discuss how identifying and targeting senescent cells might positively affect pathologic progression and musculoskeletal system regeneration.
  5. Mech Ageing Dev. 2021 Sep 06. pii: S0047-6374(21)00137-8. [Epub ahead of print] 111565
      The skeletal system undergoes irreversible structural deterioration with aging, leading to increased fracture risk and detrimental changes in mobility, posture, and gait. This state of low bone mass and microarchitectural changes, diagnosed as osteoporosis, affects millions of individuals worldwide and has high clinical and economic burdens. Recently, pre-clinical studies have linked the onset of age-related bone loss with an accumulation of senescent cells in the bone microenvironment. These senescent cells appear to be causal to age-related bone loss, as targeted clearance of these cells leads to improved bone mass and microarchitecture in old mice. Additionally, other pathologies leading to bone loss that result from DNA damage, such as cancer treatments, have shown improvements after clearance of senescent cells. The development of new therapies that clear senescent cells, termed "senolytics", is currently underway and may allow for the modulation of bone loss that results from states of high senescent cell burden, such as aging.
    Keywords:  Osteoporosis; age-related bone loss; cellular senescence; osteocytes
  6. Ageing Res Rev. 2021 Sep 03. pii: S1568-1637(21)00203-8. [Epub ahead of print] 101456
      Skin is the largest organ of the body with important protective functions, which become compromised with time due to both intrinsic and extrinsic ageing processes. Cellular senescence is the primary ageing process at cell level, associated with loss of proliferative capacity, mitochondrial dysfunction and significantly altered patterns of expression and secretion of bioactive molecules. Intervention experiments have proven cell senescence as a relevant cause of ageing in many organs. In case of skin, accumulation of senescence in all major compartments with ageing is well documented and might be responsible for most, if not all, the molecular changes observed during ageing. Incorporation of senescent cells into in-vitro skin models (specifically 3D full thickness models) recapitulates changes typically associated with skin ageing. However, crucial evidence is still missing. A beneficial effect of senescent cell ablation on skin ageing has so far only been shown following rather unspecific interventions or in transgenic mouse models. We conclude that evidence for cellular senescence as a relevant cause of intrinsic skin ageing is highly suggestive but not yet completely conclusive.
    Keywords:  Skin; ageing; senescence; wound healing
  7. Oncotarget. 2021 Aug 31. 12(18): 1821-1835
      Senolytics are basically anti-cancer drugs, repurposed to kill senescent cells selectively. It is even more difficult to selectively kill senescent cells than to kill cancer cells. Based on lessons of cancer therapy, here I suggest how to exploit oncogene-addiction and to combine drugs to achieve selectivity. However, even if selective senolytic combinations will be developed, there is little evidence that a few senescent cells are responsible for organismal aging. I also discuss gerostatics, such as rapamycin and other rapalogs, pan-mTOR inhibitors, dual PI3K/mTOR inhibitors, which inhibit growth- and aging-promoting pathways. Unlike senolytics, gerostatics do not kill cells but slow down cellular geroconversion to senescence. Numerous studies demonstrated that inhibition of the mTOR pathways by any means (genetic, pharmacological and dietary) extends lifespan. Currently, only two studies demonstrated that senolytics (fisetin and a combination Dasatinib plus Quercetin) extend lifespan in mice. These senolytics slightly inhibit the mTOR pathway. Thus, life extension by these senolytics can be explained by their slight rapamycin-like (gerostatic) effects.
    Keywords:  aging; geroscience; hyperfunction theory; senolytics; sirolimus
  8. Int J Mol Sci. 2021 Aug 28. pii: 9323. [Epub ahead of print]22(17):
      Cellular senescence and its senescence-associated secretory phenotype (SASP) are widely regarded as promising therapeutic targets for aging-related diseases, such as osteoporosis. However, the expression pattern of cellular senescence and multiple SASP secretion remains unclear, thus leaving a large gap in the knowledge for a desirable intervention targeting cellular senescence. Therefore, there is a critical need to understand the molecular mechanism of SASP secretion in the bone microenvironment that can ameliorate aging-related degenerative pathologies including osteoporosis. In this study, osteocyte-like cells (MLO-Y4) were induced to cellular senescence by 2 Gy γ-rays; then, senescence phenotype changes and adverse effects of SASP on bone marrow mesenchymal stem cell (BMSC) differentiation potential were investigated. The results revealed that 2 Gy irradiation could hinder cell viability, shorten cell dendrites, and induce cellular senescence, as evidenced by the higher expression of senescence markers p16 and p21 and the elevated formation of senescence-associated heterochromatin foci (SAHF), which was accompanied by the enhanced secretion of SASP markers such as IL-1α, IL-6, MMP-3, IGFBP-6, resistin, and adiponectin. When 0.8 μM JAK1 inhibitors were added to block SASP secretion, the higher expression of SASP was blunted, but the inhibition in osteogenic and adipogenic differentiation potential of BMSCs co-cultured with irradiated MLO-Y4 cell conditioned medium (CM- 2 Gy) was alleviated. These results suggest that senescent osteocytes can perturb BMSCs' differential potential via the paracrine signaling of SASP, which was also demonstrated by in vivo experiments. In conclusion, we identified the SASP factor partially responsible for the degenerative differentiation of BMSCs, which allowed us to hypothesize that senescent osteocytes and their SASPs may contribute to radiation-induced bone loss.
    Keywords:  bone marrow mesenchymal stem cells (BMSCs); cellular senescence; irradiation; osteocytes; senescence-associated secretory phenotype (SASP)
  9. Ann N Y Acad Sci. 2021 Sep 08.
      For many years, it was believed that the aging process was inevitable and that age-related diseases could not be prevented or reversed. The geroscience hypothesis, however, posits that aging is, in fact, malleable and, by targeting the hallmarks of biological aging, it is indeed possible to alleviate age-related diseases and dysfunction and extend longevity. This field of geroscience thus aims to prevent the development of multiple disorders with age, thereby extending healthspan, with the reduction of morbidity toward the end of life. Experts in the field have made remarkable advancements in understanding the mechanisms underlying biological aging and identified ways to target aging pathways using both novel agents and repurposed therapies. While geroscience researchers currently face significant barriers in bringing therapies through clinical development, proof-of-concept studies, as well as early-stage clinical trials, are underway to assess the feasibility of drug evaluation and lay a regulatory foundation for future FDA approvals in the future.
    Keywords:  biological aging; geroscience; hallmarks of aging; healthspan; longevity
  10. Mol Aspects Med. 2021 Sep 07. pii: S0098-2997(21)00080-7. [Epub ahead of print] 101020
      Aging is associated with many deleterious changes at the cellular level, including the accumulation of potentially toxic components that can have devastating effects on health. A key protective mechanism to this end is the cellular recycling process called autophagy. During autophagy, damaged or surplus cellular components are delivered to acidic vesicles called lysosomes, that secure degradation and recycling of the components. Numerous links between autophagy and aging exist. Autophagy declines with age, and increasing evidence suggests that this reduction plays important roles in both physiological aging and the development of age-associated disorders. Studies in pharmacologically and genetically manipulated model organisms indicate that defects in autophagy promote age-related diseases, and conversely, that enhancement of autophagy has beneficial effects on both healthspan and lifespan. Here, we review our current understanding of the role of autophagy in different physiological processes and their molecular links with aging and age-related diseases. We also highlight some recent advances in the field that could accelerate the development of autophagy-based therapeutic interventions.
    Keywords:  AMPK; Aging; Autophagy; C. elegans; Healthspan; Lifespan; Neurodegeneration; mTOR
  11. Int Rev Cell Mol Biol. 2021 ;pii: S1937-6448(21)00076-9. [Epub ahead of print]364 1-110
      Aging-related diseases such as cancer can be traced to the accumulation of molecular disorder including increased DNA mutations and epigenetic drift. We provide a comprehensive review of recent results in mice and humans on modifications of DNA methylation and histone variants during aging and in cancer. Accumulated errors in DNA methylation maintenance lead to global decreases in DNA methylation with relaxed repression of repeated DNA and focal hypermethylation blocking the expression of tumor suppressor genes. Epigenetic clocks based on quantifying levels of DNA methylation at specific genomic sites is proving to be a valuable metric for estimating the biological age of individuals. Histone variants have specialized functions in transcriptional regulation and genome stability. Their concentration tends to increase in aged post-mitotic chromatin, but their effects in cancer are mainly determined by their specialized functions. Our increased understanding of epigenetic regulation and their modifications during aging has motivated interventions to delay or reverse epigenetic modifications using the epigenetic clocks as a rapid readout for efficacity. Similarly, the knowledge of epigenetic modifications in cancer is suggesting new approaches to target these modifications for cancer therapy.
    Keywords:  Aging; Cancer; DNA methylation; Epigenetic clocks; Epigenetics; Histone variants; Senescence
  12. Semin Cell Dev Biol. 2021 Sep 04. pii: S1084-9521(21)00223-8. [Epub ahead of print]
      Aging induces alterations in bone structure and strength through a multitude of processes, exacerbating common aging- related diseases like osteoporosis and osteoarthritis. Cellular hallmarks of aging are examined, as related to bone and the marrow microenvironment, and ways in which these might contribute to a variety of age-related perturbations in osteoblasts, osteocytes, marrow adipocytes, chondrocytes, osteoclasts, and their respective progenitors. Cellular senescence, stem cell exhaustion, mitochondrial dysfunction, epigenetic and intracellular communication changes are central pathways and recognized as associated and potentially causal in aging. We focus on these in musculoskeletal system and highlight knowledge gaps in the literature regarding cellular and tissue crosstalk in bone, cartilage, and the bone marrow niche. While senolytics have been utilized to target aging pathways, here we propose non-pharmacologic, exercise-based interventions as prospective "senolytics" against aging effects on the skeleton. Increased bone mass and delayed onset or progression of osteoporosis and osteoarthritis are some of the recognized benefits of regular exercise across the lifespan. Further investigation is needed to delineate how cellular indicators of aging manifest in bone and the marrow niche and how altered cellular and tissue crosstalk impact disease progression, as well as consideration of exercise as a therapeutic modality, as a means to enhance discovery of bone-targeted therapies.
    Keywords:  Adipocyte; Aging; Chondrocyte; Exercise; Hematopoietic stem cell (HSC); Loading; Marrow adipose tissue (MAT); Mechanical; Mesenchymal stem cell (MSC); Niche; Osteoarthritis; Osteoblast; Osteoclast; Osteoporosis; Senescence
  13. Aging (Albany NY). 2021 Sep 08. 13(undefined):
      The senescence of retinal pigment epithelial (RPE) cells is associated with age-related macular degeneration (AMD), a leading cause of blindness in the world. HSP90 is a predominant chaperone that regulates cellular homeostasis under divergent physio-pathological conditions including senescence. However, the role of HSP90 in senescent RPE cells still remains unclear. Here, we reported that HSP90 acts as a senomorphic target of senescent RPE cells in vitro. Using H2O2-induced senescent ARPE-19 cells and replicative senescent primary RPE cells from rhesus monkey, we found that HSP90 upregulates the expression of IKKα, and HIF1α in senescent ARPE-19 cells and subsequently controls the induction of distinct senescence-associated inflammatory factors. Senescent ARPE-19 cells are more resistant to the cytotoxic HSP90 inhibitor IPI504 (IC50 = 36.78 μM) when compared to normal ARPE-19 cells (IC50 = 6.16 μM). Administration of IPI504 at 0.5-5 μM can significantly inhibit the induction of IL-1β, IL-6, IL-8, MCP-1 and VEGFA in senescent ARPE-19 and the senescence-mediated migration of retinal capillary endothelial cells in vitro. In addition, we found that inhibition of HSP90 by IPI504 reduces SA-β-Gal's protein expression and enzyme activity in a dose-dependent manner. HSP90 interacts with and regulates SA-β-Gal protein stabilization in senescent ARPE-19 cells. Taken together, these results suggest that HSP90 regulates the SASP and SA-β-Gal activity in senescent RPE cells through associating with distinctive mechanism including NF-κB, HIF1α and lysosomal SA-β-Gal. HSP90 inhibitors (e.g. IPI504) could be a promising senomorphic drug candidate for AMD intervention.
    Keywords:  HIF1α; HSP90; NF-kb; senotheray; β-galactosidase
  14. Front Pharmacol. 2021 ;12 728100
      Osteoarthritis (OA) is a chronic, debilitating joint disease characterized by progressive destruction of articular cartilage. For a long time, OA has been considered as a degenerative disease, while recent observations indicate the mechanisms responsible for the pathogenesis of OA are multifaceted. Aging is a key factor in its development. Current treatments are palliative and no disease modifying anti-osteoarthritis drugs (DMOADs) are available. In addition to articular cartilage degradation, cellular senescence, synovial inflammation, and epigenetic alterations may all have a role in its formation. Accumulating data demonstrate a clear relationship between the senescence of articular chondrocytes and OA formation and progression. Inhibition of cell senescence may help identify new agents with the properties of DMOADs. Several anti-cellular senescence strategies have been proposed and these include sirtuin-activating compounds (STACs), senolytics, and senomorphics drugs. These agents may selectively remove senescent cells or ameliorate their harmful effects. The results from preclinical experiments and clinical trials are inspiring. However, more studies are warranted to confirm their efficacy, safety profiles and adverse effects of these agents.
    Keywords:  aging; cartilage; cells; osteoarthritis; senescence
  15. Exp Ther Med. 2021 Oct;22(4): 1114
      Doxorubicin (DOX) is an efficacious antineoplastic drug; however, its use is limited due to its cardiotoxicity. Cardiomyocyte senescence is considered to be a key factor in the development of DOX-related cardiomyopathy. Complement component 5a (C5a) and the C5a receptor (C5aR) have been reported to play a key role in the process of cellular senescence. However, to the best of our knowledge, the exact role of C5a and C5aR in cellular senescence in the heart remains largely unknown. Reverse transcription-quantitative (RT-q)PCR and western blot assays were used to analyze the expression levels of C5a and C5aR in H9c2 embryonic rat cardiomyocytes and AC16 human cardiomyocyte-like cells. The cells were treated with DOX and a C5aR antagonist (C5aRA). The expression of TNF-α and IFN-γ was determined using ELISA and western blotting. The levels of reactive oxygen species (ROS) were also measured using ELISA. Cellular senescence was determined using senescence-associated β-galactosidase (SA-β-gal) staining and by analyzing the protein expression levels of p53, p16, p21 and insulin-like growth factor-binding protein 3 (IGFBP3). The expression levels of C5a and C5aR were found to be upregulated during the DOX-induced senescence of H9c2 and AC16 cardiomyocytes. Treatment with C5aRA downregulated TNF-α and IFN-γ expression, in addition to ROS levels. Furthermore, C5aRA prevented DOX-induced cellular senescence and decreased the levels of positive SA-β-gal staining in H9c2 and AC16 cardiomyocytes, in addition to downregulating the expression levels of p53, p16, p21 and IGFBP3. C5aRA also increased the telomere length and telomerase activity in H9c2 and AC16 cardiomyocytes following DOX stimulation. In conclusion, the findings of the present study indicated that C5a and C5aR may play a key role in cardiomyocyte senescence, and treatment with C5aRA may be an effective method for preventing DOX-induced cardiomyocyte aging.
    Keywords:  cardiomyocyte senescence; complement component 5a; complement component 5a receptor; complement component 5a receptor antagonist; doxorubicin
  16. Cancers (Basel). 2021 Sep 01. pii: 4414. [Epub ahead of print]13(17):
      NCOR1 is a corepressor that mediates transcriptional repression through its association with nuclear receptors and specific transcription factors. Some evidence supports a role for NCOR1 in neonatal intestinal epithelium maturation and the maintenance of epithelial integrity during experimental colitis in mice. We hypothesized that NCOR1 could control colorectal cancer cell proliferation and tumorigenicity. Conditional intestinal epithelial deletion of Ncor1 in ApcMin/+ mice resulted in a significant reduction in polyposis. RNAi targeting of NCOR1 in Caco-2/15 and HT-29 cell lines led to a reduction in cell growth, characterized by cellular senescence associated with a secretory phenotype. Tumor growth of HT-29 cells was reduced in the absence of NCOR1 in the mouse xenografts. RNA-seq transcriptome profiling of colon cancer cells confirmed the senescence phenotype in the absence of NCOR1 and predicted the occurrence of a pro-migration cellular signature in this context. SOX2, a transcription factor essential for pluripotency of embryonic stem cells, was induced under these conditions. In conclusion, depletion of NCOR1 reduced intestinal polyposis in mice and caused growth arrest, leading to senescence in human colorectal cell lines. The acquisition of a pro-metastasis signature in the absence of NCOR1 could indicate long-term potential adverse consequences of colon-cancer-induced senescence.
    Keywords:  ApcMin/+; Caco-2/15; HT-29; NCOR1; intestinal tumorigenesis; senescence
  17. Front Immunol. 2021 ;12 710608
      Aging adversely affects inflammatory processes in the brain, which has important implications in the progression of neurodegenerative disease. Following traumatic brain injury (TBI), aged animals exhibit worsened neurological function and exacerbated microglial-associated neuroinflammation. Type I Interferons (IFN-I) contribute to the development of TBI neuropathology. Further, the Cyclic GMP-AMP Synthase (cGAS) and Stimulator of Interferon Genes (STING) pathway, a key inducer of IFN-I responses, has been implicated in neuroinflammatory activity in several age-related neurodegenerative diseases. Here, we set out to investigate the effects of TBI on cGAS/STING activation, IFN-I signaling and neuroinflammation in young and aged C57Bl/6 male mice. Using a controlled cortical impact model, we evaluated transcriptomic changes in the injured cortex at 24 hours post-injury, and confirmed activation of key neuroinflammatory pathways in biochemical studies. TBI induced changes were highly enriched for transcripts that were involved in inflammatory responses to stress and host defense. Deeper analysis revealed that TBI increased expression of IFN-I related genes (e.g. Ifnb1, Irf7, Ifi204, Isg15) and IFN-I signaling in the injured cortex of aged compared to young mice. There was also a significant age-related increase in the activation of the DNA-recognition pathway, cGAS, which is a key mechanism to propagate IFN-I responses. Finally, enhanced IFN-I signaling in the aged TBI brain was confirmed by increased phosphorylation of STAT1, an important IFN-I effector molecule. This age-related activation of cGAS and IFN-I signaling may prove to be a mechanistic link between microglial-associated neuroinflammation and neurodegeneration in the aged TBI brain.
    Keywords:  aging; microglia; neuroinflammation; traumatic brain injury; type I interferons
  18. Front Cell Dev Biol. 2021 ;9 683459
      Ageing is an inevitable event in the lifecycle of all organisms, characterized by progressive physiological deterioration and increased vulnerability to death. Ageing has also been described as the primary risk factor of most neurodegenerative diseases, including Alzheimer's disease (AD), Parkinson's disease (PD), Huntington's disease (HD), and frontotemporal lobar dementia (FTD). These neurodegenerative diseases occur more prevalently in the aged populations. Few effective treatments have been identified to treat these epidemic neurological crises. Neurodegenerative diseases are associated with enormous socioeconomic and personal costs. Here, the pathogenesis of AD, PD, and other neurodegenerative diseases has been presented, including a summary of their known associations with the biological hallmarks of ageing: genomic instability, telomere attrition, epigenetic alterations, loss of proteostasis, mitochondrial dysfunction, cellular senescence, deregulated nutrient sensing, stem cell exhaustion, and altered intercellular communications. Understanding the central biological mechanisms that underlie ageing is important for identifying novel therapeutic targets for neurodegenerative diseases. Potential therapeutic strategies, including the use of NAD+ precursors, mitophagy inducers, and inhibitors of cellular senescence, has also been discussed.
    Keywords:  NAD+; aggregation; inflammation; mitophagy; neurodegenerative diseases
  19. Aging Cell. 2021 Sep 09. e13472
      Metabolic dysfunction and protein aggregation are common characteristics that occur in age-related neurodegenerative disease. However, the mechanisms underlying these abnormalities remain poorly understood. We have found that mutations in the gene encoding presenilin in Caenorhabditis elegans, sel-12, results in elevated mitochondrial activity that drives oxidative stress and neuronal dysfunction. Mutations in the human presenilin genes are the primary cause of familial Alzheimer's disease. Here, we demonstrate that loss of SEL-12/presenilin results in the hyperactivation of the mTORC1 pathway. This hyperactivation is caused by elevated mitochondrial calcium influx and, likely, the associated increase in mitochondrial activity. Reducing mTORC1 activity improves proteostasis defects and neurodegenerative phenotypes associated with loss of SEL-12 function. Consistent with high mTORC1 activity, we find that SEL-12 loss reduces autophagosome formation, and this reduction is prevented by limiting mitochondrial calcium uptake. Moreover, the improvements of proteostasis and neuronal defects in sel-12 mutants due to mTORC1 inhibition require the induction of autophagy. These results indicate that mTORC1 hyperactivation exacerbates the defects in proteostasis and neuronal function in sel-12 mutants and demonstrate a critical role of presenilin in promoting neuronal health.
    Keywords:   Caenorhabditis elegans ; Alzheimer; aging; calcium; mTORC1; mitochondria; presenilin
  20. Curr Med Chem. 2021 Sep 01.
      There is an increase in the incidence of cardiovascular diseases with aging and it is one of the leading causes of death worldwide. The main cardiovascular pathologies include atherosclerosis, stroke, myocardial infarction, hypertension and stroke. Chronic inflammation is one of the significant contributors to the age-related vascular diseases. Therefore, it is important to understand the molecular mechanisms of the persistent inflammatory conditions occurring in the blood vessels as well as the signaling pathways involved. Herein, we performed an extant search of literature involving PubMed, ISI, WoS and Scopus databases for retrieving all relevant articles with the most recent findings illustrating the potential role of various inflammatory mediators along with their proposed activated pathways in the pathogenesis and progression of vascular aging. We also highlight the major pathways contributing to age-related vascular disorders. The outlined molecular mechanisms, pathways and mediators of vascular aging represent potential drug targets that can be utilized to inhibit and/or slow the pathogenesis and progression of vascular aging.
    Keywords:  atherosclerosis; cardiovascular; inflammation; inflammatory mediators; stroke; vascular aging
  21. Theriogenology. 2021 Aug 31. pii: S0093-691X(21)00310-1. [Epub ahead of print]175 44-53
      Advancing age is associated with a decline in fertility and testicular function in males. The testicular interstitial fluid (TIF) bathing the seminiferous tubules and testicular interstitium is considered an important part of the testicular microenvironment. However, the TIF proteome in mice and whether it changes with age remain unclear. This study aimed to map the TIF proteome and identify differentially abundant proteins (DEPs) among young, middle-aged, and old mice using isobaric tags for relative and absolute quantification (iTRAQ) coupled with liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry. A total of 1477 proteins were identified in murine TIF. The abundance of 706 proteins showed a linear change trend with age, of which 360 and 346 proteins increased and decreased, respectively. In addition, 45 age-related DEPs were identified (P < 0.05, with at least 1.2-fold up- or downregulation). Bioinformatic analyses revealed that these proteins were involved in "actin cytoskeleton organization," "intrinsic apoptotic signaling pathway," and "regulation of protein transport." Comparative analysis with relevant proteomes previously reported further revealed the characteristics of mouse TIF proteome. Moreover, two of the age-related DEPs (Fga and Qsox1) were also found to be age-related differentially expressed proteins in human blood plasma and senescence-related secretome of human peritubular myoid cells. Taken together, these findings may represent the foundation for a better understanding of the molecular function of TIF and testicular aging.
    Keywords:  Aging; Proteomics; Testicular interstitial fluid; iTRAQ
  22. Integr Cancer Ther. 2021 Jan-Dec;20:20 15347354211035450
      Doxorubicin (Dox) induces senescence in numerous cancer cell types, but these senescent cancer cells relapse again if they are not eliminated. On this principle, we investigated the apoptotic effect of thymoquinone (TQ), the active ingredient of Nigella sativa seeds and costunolide (COS), the active ingredient of Costus speciosus, on the senescent colon (Sen-HCT116) and senescent breast (Sen-MCF7) cancer cell lines in reference to their corresponding proliferative cells to rapidly eliminate the senescent cancer cells. The senescence markers of Sen-HCT116 and Sen-MCF7 were determined by a significant decrease in bromodeoxyuridine (BrdU) incorporation and significant increases in SA-β-gal, p53, and p21 levels. Then proliferative, Sen-HCT116, and Sen-MCF7 cells were subjected to either TQ (50 µM) or COS (30 µM), the Bcl2-associated X protein (Bax), B-cell lymphoma 2 (Bcl2), caspase 3 mRNA expression and its activity were established. Results revealed that TQ significantly increased the Bax/Bcl2 ratio in HCT116 + Dox5 + TQ, MCF7 + TQ, and MCF7 + Dox5 + TQ compared with their corresponding controls. COS significantly increased the Bax/Bcl2 ratio in HCT116 + Dox5 + TQ and MCF7 + Dox5 + TQ compared with their related controls. Also, TQ and COS were significantly increased caspase 3 activity and cell proliferation of Sen-HCT116 and Sen-MCF7. The data revealed a higher sensitivity of senescent cells to TQ or COS than their corresponding proliferative cells.
    Keywords:  apoptosis; costunolide; senescence; thymoquinone
  23. Rejuvenation Res. 2021 Sep 05.
      Chitosan is a polysaccharide made up of β1,4-linked D-glucosamine (GlcN) and N-acetyl-GlcN. In this study, we evaluated the possible caloric restriction mimetic effect of dietary chitosan on systemic redox status, inflammatory biomarkers and lipid profile in plasma and erythrocyte samples of D-galactose induced mimetically aged rats . We found a significant increase (p< 0.05) in the reactive oxygen species , protein carbonyl, fasting glucose, body weight, cholesterol, triglyceride, inflammatory markers -IL-6 & TNF-alpha in an accelerated senescent rat model. There was also a significant decrease (p< 0.05) in glutathione, advanced glycation end product in senescent rats. Chitosan treatment increased Ferric Reducing Antioxidant Potential, glutathione, plasma membrane reduced system in accelerated senescent model of rats. .Our finding suggests that Chitosan has properties similar to a caloric restriction mimetic and can effectively maintain the redox homeostasis during the aging process in rat erythrocytes.
  24. Elife. 2021 Sep 06. pii: e69603. [Epub ahead of print]10
      Decidual remodelling of midluteal endometrium leads to a short implantation window after which the uterine mucosa either breaks down or is transformed into a robust matrix that accommodates the placenta throughout pregnancy. To gain insights into the underlying mechanisms, we established and characterised endometrial assembloids, consisting of gland-like organoids and primary stromal cells. Single-cell transcriptomics revealed that decidualized assembloids closely resemble midluteal endometrium, harbouring differentiated and senescent subpopulations in both glands and stroma. We show that acute senescence in glandular epithelium drives secretion of multiple canonical implantation factors, whereas in the stroma it calibrates the emergence of anti-inflammatory decidual cells and pro-inflammatory senescent decidual cells. Pharmacological inhibition of stress responses in pre-decidual cells accelerated decidualization by eliminating the emergence of senescent decidual cells. In co-culture experiments, accelerated decidualization resulted in entrapment of collapsed human blastocysts in a robust, static decidual matrix. By contrast, the presence of senescent decidual cells created a dynamic implantation environment, enabling embryo expansion and attachment, although their persistence led to gradual disintegration of assembloids. Our findings suggest that decidual senescence controls endometrial fate decisions at implantation and highlight how endometrial assembloids may accelerate the discovery of new treatments to prevent reproductive failure.
    Keywords:  cell biology; human
  25. Stem Cells. 2021 Sep 06.
      Fully differentiated cells can be reprogrammed through ectopic expression of key transcription factors to create induced pluripotent stem cells. These cells share many characteristics of normal embryonic stem cells and have great promise in disease modelling and regenerative medicine. The process of remodelling has its limitations, including a very low efficiency due to the upregulation of many anti-proliferative genes, including cyclin dependent kinase inhibitors CDKN1A and CDKN2A, which serve to protect the cell by inducing apoptotic and senescent programs. Our data reveals a unique cell cycle mechanism enabling mouse fibroblasts to repress cyclin dependent kinase inhibitors through the activation of the epigenetic regulator EZH2 by a cyclin-like protein SPY1. This data reveals that the SPY1 protein is required for reprogramming to a pluripotent state and is capable of increasing reprogramming efficiency. © AlphaMed Press 2021 SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT: This work reveals a mechanism used by normal fibroblasts to override reprogramming-induced senescence, thereby increasing the number of cells amenable to becoming induced pluripotent stem cells. Improving efficiencies for deriving pluripotent cells has tremendous potential for economic benefit in regenerative medicine and may reveal mechanisms important in normal development and in various disease states, such as cancer.
    Keywords:  Cell Cycle Genes; Cellular Reprogramming; Cellular Senescence; Histone H3 Methyltransferase; Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells
  26. Aging (Albany NY). 2021 Sep 10. 13(undefined):
      The gender gap in life expectancy and cancer incidence suggests differences in the aging process between the sexes. Genomic instability has been recognized as a key factor in aging, but little is known about sex-specific differences. Therefore, we analyzed DNA double-strand break (DSB) repair in cycling human peripheral blood lymphocytes (PBL) from male and female donors of different age. Reporter-based DSB repair analyses revealed differential regulation of pathway usage in PBL from male and female donors with age: Non-homologous end joining (NHEJ) was inversely regulated in men and women; the activity of pathways requiring end processing and strand annealing steps such as microhomology-mediated end joining (MMEJ) declined with age in women but not in men. Screening candidate proteins identified the NHEJ protein KU70 as well as the end resection regulatory factors ATM and BLM showing reduced expression during aging in women. Consistently, the regulatory factor BLM contributed to the MMEJ proficiency in young but not in old women as demonstrated by knockdown analysis. In conclusion, we show that DSB repair is subject to changes upon aging and age-related changes in DSB repair are distinct in men and women.
    Keywords:  BLM; DNA double-strand break repair; aging; end resection; sex
  27. Adv Exp Med Biol. 2021 ;1325 341-373
      Human lifespan has increased significantly in the last 200 years, emphasizing our need to age healthily. Insights into molecular mechanisms of aging might allow us to slow down its rate or even revert it. Similar to aging, glycosylation is regulated by an intricate interplay of genetic and environmental factors. The dynamics of glycopattern variation during aging has been mostly explored for plasma/serum and immunoglobulin G (IgG) N-glycome, as we describe thoroughly in this chapter. In addition, we discuss the potential functional role of agalactosylated IgG glycans in aging, through modulation of inflammation level, as proposed by the concept of inflammaging. We also comment on the potential to use the plasma/serum and IgG N-glycome as a biomarker of healthy aging and on the interventions that modulate the IgG glycopattern. Finally, we discuss the current knowledge about animal models for human plasma/serum and IgG glycosylation and mention other, less explored, instances of glycopattern changes during organismal aging and cellular senescence.
    Keywords:  Aging; Biological age; Glycosylation; IgG N-glycome; Inflammaging; Plasma N-glycome
  28. Aging (Albany NY). 2021 Sep 07. 13(undefined):
      The ability to maintain systemic metabolic homeostasis through various mechanisms represents a crucial strength of kidneys in the study of metabolic syndrome or aging. Moreover, age-associated kidney failure has been widely accepted. However, efforts to demonstrate aging-dependent renal metabolic rewiring have been limited. In the present study, we investigated aging-related renal metabolic determinants by integrating metabolomic and transcriptomic data sets from kidneys of young (3 months, n = 7 and 3 for respectively) and old (24 months, n = 8 and 3 for respectively) naive C57BL/6 male mice. Metabolite profiling analysis was conducted, followed by data processing via network and pathway analyses, to identify differential metabolites. In the aged group, the levels of glutathione and oxidized glutathione were significantly increased, but the levels of gamma-glutamyl amino acids, amino acids combined with the gamma-glutamyl moiety from glutathione by membrane transpeptidases, and circulating glutathione levels were decreased. In transcriptomic analysis, differential expression of metabolic enzymes is consistent with the hypothesis of aging-dependent rewiring in renal glutathione metabolism; pathway and network analyses further revealed the increased expression of immune-related genes in the aged group. Collectively, our integrative analysis results revealed that defective renal glutathione metabolism is a signature of renal aging. Therefore, we hypothesize that restraining renal glutathione metabolism might alleviate or delay age-associated renal metabolic deterioration, and aberrant activation of the renal immune system.
    Keywords:  glutathione metabolism; metabolomics; renal aging; transcriptomics
  29. Curr Opin Pharmacol. 2021 Sep 07. pii: S1471-4892(21)00127-2. [Epub ahead of print]60 291-297
      Nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (NAD) is essential for cellular physiological processes, directly or indirectly affecting metabolism and gene expression. The decline of NAD+ levels in the heart is accompanied by aging, causing cardiac pathological remodeling and dysfunction. Niacinamide mononucleotide (NMN) has emerged as a precursor to alleviate age-related cardiac pathophysiological changes by improving cardiac NAD+ homeostasis. Preclinical trials on the efficacy and safety of intaking NMN have shown encouraging results, revealing a cardioprotective effect without significant side effects. Strategies for improving the effectiveness of NMN are also evolving. The present review aimed to summarize the potentials of NMN as a nutraceutical against cardiac aging and highlight the relationship between NMN supplementation and cardiac protection.
  30. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2021 Sep 14. pii: e2021013118. [Epub ahead of print]118(37):
      Aged skeletal muscle is markedly affected by fatty muscle infiltration, and strategies to reduce the occurrence of intramuscular adipocytes are urgently needed. Here, we show that fibroblast growth factor-2 (FGF-2) not only stimulates muscle growth but also promotes intramuscular adipogenesis. Using multiple screening assays upstream and downstream of microRNA (miR)-29a signaling, we located the secreted protein and adipogenic inhibitor SPARC to an FGF-2 signaling pathway that is conserved between skeletal muscle cells from mice and humans and that is activated in skeletal muscle of aged mice and humans. FGF-2 induces the miR-29a/SPARC axis through transcriptional activation of FRA-1, which binds and activates an evolutionary conserved AP-1 site element proximal in the miR-29a promoter. Genetic deletions in muscle cells and adeno-associated virus-mediated overexpression of FGF-2 or SPARC in mouse skeletal muscle revealed that this axis regulates differentiation of fibro/adipogenic progenitors in vitro and intramuscular adipose tissue (IMAT) formation in vivo. Skeletal muscle from human donors aged >75 y versus <55 y showed activation of FGF-2-dependent signaling and increased IMAT. Thus, our data highlights a disparate role of FGF-2 in adult skeletal muscle and reveals a pathway to combat fat accumulation in aged human skeletal muscle.
    Keywords:  FGF-2; FRA-1; IMAT; SPARC; skeletal muscle
  31. Cell Rep. 2021 Sep 07. pii: S2211-1247(21)01112-8. [Epub ahead of print]36(10): 109668
      Aging, genomic stress, and mitochondrial dysfunction are risk factors for neurodegenerative pathologies, such as Parkinson disease (PD). Although genomic instability is associated with aging and mitochondrial impairment, the underlying mechanisms are poorly understood. Here, we show that base excision repair generates genomic stress, promoting age-related neurodegeneration in a Caenorhabditis elegans PD model. A physiological level of NTH-1 DNA glycosylase mediates mitochondrial and nuclear genomic instability, which promote degeneration of dopaminergic neurons in older nematodes. Conversely, NTH-1 deficiency protects against α-synuclein-induced neurotoxicity, maintaining neuronal function with age. This apparent paradox is caused by modulation of mitochondrial transcription in NTH-1-deficient cells, and this modulation activates LMD-3, JNK-1, and SKN-1 and induces mitohormesis. The dependance of neuroprotection on mitochondrial transcription highlights the integration of BER and transcription regulation during physiological aging. Finally, whole-exome sequencing of genomic DNA from patients with idiopathic PD suggests that base excision repair might modulate susceptibility to PD in humans.
    Keywords:  C. elegans; DNA-glycosylase; NTH-1; Parkinson disease; aging; base excision repair; hydrogen peroxide; mitohormesis; neurodegeneration; oxidative DNA damage
  32. Clin Epigenetics. 2021 Sep 06. 13(1): 170
      Ageing is an inevitable condition that afflicts all humans. Recent achievements, such as the generation of induced pluripotent stem cells, have delivered preliminary evidence that slowing down and reversing the ageing process might be possible. However, these techniques usually involve complete dedifferentiation, i.e. somatic cell identity is lost as cells are converted to a pluripotent state. Separating the rejuvenative properties of reprogramming from dedifferentiation is a promising prospect, termed epigenetic rejuvenation. Reprogramming-induced rejuvenation strategies currently involve using Yamanaka factors (typically transiently expressed to prevent full dedifferentiation) and are promising candidates to safely reduce biological age. Here, we review the development and potential of reprogramming-induced rejuvenation as an anti-ageing strategy.
    Keywords:  Ageing; Cellular reprogramming; Epigenetic age; Epigenetic clocks; Rejuvenation; Reprogramming-induced rejuvenation; Transient reprogramming
  33. Rejuvenation Res. 2021 Sep 05.
      In our recent transcriptomic meta-analysis, we used random forest machine learning to accurately predict age in human blood, bone, brain, heart, and retina tissues given gene inputs. Although each tissue-specific model utilized a unique number of genes for age prediction, we found that the following six genes were prioritized in all five tissues: CHI3L2, CIDEC, FCGR3A, RPS4Y1, SLC11A1, and VTCN1. Since being selected for age prediction in multiple tissues is unique, we decided to explore these pan-tissue clock genes in greater detail. In the present study, we began by performing over-representation and network topology-based enrichment analyses in the Gene Ontology Biological Process database. These analyses revealed that the immunological terms "response to protozoan", "immune response", and "positive regulation of immune system process" were significantly enriched by these clock inputs. Expression analyses in mouse and human tissues identified that these inputs are frequently upregulated or downregulated with age. A detailed literature search showed that all six genes had noteworthy connections to age-related disease. For example, mice deficient in Cidec are protected against various metabolic defects while suppressing VTCN1 inhibits age-related cancers in mouse models. Using a large multi-tissue transcriptomic dataset (n = 1,125), we additionally generate a novel, minimalistic aging clock that can predict human age (R = 0.76, root-mean square error = 9.77 years) using just these six genes as inputs. Taken all together, these six genes are connected to diverse aspects of aging.
  34. Aging (Albany NY). 2021 Sep 07. 13(undefined):
      Therapy-induced senescence (TIS) is a major cellular response to anticancer therapies. While induction of a persistent growth arrest would be a desirable outcome in cancer therapy, it has been shown that, unlike normal cells, cancer cells are able to evade the senescence cell cycle arrest and to resume proliferation, likely contributing to tumor relapse. Notably, cells that escape from TIS acquire a plastic, stem cell-like phenotype. The metabolic dependencies of cells that evade senescence have not been thoroughly studied. In this study, we show that glutamine depletion inhibits escape from TIS in all cell lines studied, and reduces the stem cell subpopulation. In line with a metabolic reliance on glutamine, escaped clones overexpress the glutamine transporter SLC1A5. We also demonstrate a central role of glutamine synthetase that mediates resistance to glutamine deprivation, conferring independence from exogenous glutamine. Finally, rescue experiments demonstrate that glutamine provides nitrogen for nucleotides biosynthesis in cells that escape from TIS, but also suggest a critical involvement of glutamine in other metabolic and non-metabolic pathways. On the whole, these results reveal a metabolic vulnerability of cancer stem cells that recover proliferation after exposure to anticancer therapies, which could be exploited to prevent tumor recurrence.
    Keywords:  cancer stem cells; escape; glutamine; glutamine synthetase; therapy-induced senescence
  35. J Food Biochem. 2021 Sep 08. e13931
      The aging process leads to progressive loss of kidney function. Sirtuin1 (SIRT1) exerts renoprotective effects by conferring resistance to cellular stresses. Trehalose potentially displayed various beneficial effects to promote health span. In this study, we investigated the effects of trehalose on renal SIRT1 and kidney function in senescent rats. Trehalose (2% w/v) was administrated in drinking water for 1 month to male aged rats (24 months). Then, the level of SIRT1 mRNA and protein, malondialdehyde, total antioxidant capacity, tumor necrosis factor α as well as parameters related to the function and histology of the kidneys were evaluated. Trehalose supplementation increased the level of SIRT1, whereas alleviated the level of oxidative stress, inflammation, and histopathology scores in senescent tissues. However, trehalose administration did not alter kidney function indices in old rats. Collectively, these findings suggested that trehalose was an effective intervention to ameliorate some aspects of age-associated injury in the old kidneys. PRACTICAL APPLICATIONS: Aging is associated with impairment in renal structure and function. Trehalose is a natural disaccharide, which is widely distributed in many organisms. The consumption of trehalose as a dietary supplement is increasing worldwide. This study showed that trehalose administration to aged rats had renoprotective effects through reducing oxidative stress and inflammation, which was mediated by SIRT1. Our results provide useful information for individuals using this sugar as a supplement.
    Keywords:  SIRT1; aging; inflammation; oxidative stress; trehalose
  36. Am J Physiol Heart Circ Physiol. 2021 Sep 10.
      Vascular aging is highly associated with cardiovascular morbidity and mortality. Although the senescence of vascular smooth muscle cells (VSMCs) has been well-established as a major contributor to vascular aging, intracellular and exosomal micro-RNA (miRNA) signaling pathways in senescent VSMCs have not been fully elucidated. This study aimed to identify the differential expression of intracellular and exosomal miRNA in human VSMCs (hVSMCs) during replicative senescence (RS). To achieve this aim, intracellular and exosomal miRNAs were isolated from hVSMCs and subsequently subjected to whole-genome small RNA next-generation sequencing, bioinformatics analyses and qPCR validation. Three significant findings were obtained. First, senescent hVSMC-derived exosomes tended to cluster together during RS and the molecular weight of the exosomal protein tumor susceptibility gene 101 (TSG-101) increased relative to the intracellular TSG101, suggesting potential posttranslational modifications of exosomal TSG-101. Secondly, there was a significant decrease in both intracellular and exosomal hsa-miR-155-5p expression (n = 3, FDR < 0.05), potentially being a cell type-specific biomarker of hVSMCs during RS. Importantly, hsa-miR-155-5p was found to associate with cell cycle arrest and elevated oxidative stress. Lastly, miRNAs from the intracellular pool, i.e. hsa-miR-664a-3p, hsa-miR-664a-5p, hsa-miR-664b-3p, hsa-miR-4485-3p, hsa-miR-10527-5p and hsa-miR-12136,and that from the exosomal pool, i.e. hsa-miR-7704, were upregulated in hVSMCs during RS (n = 3, FDR < 0.05). Interestingly, these novel upregulated miRNAs were not functionally well-annotated in hVSMCs to date. In conclusion, hVSMC- specific miRNA expression profiles during RS potentially provide valuable insights into the signaling pathways leading to vascular aging.
    Keywords:  aging; cellular communication; phenotypic switching; replicative senescence; stress-induced senescence
  37. Biomed Pharmacother. 2021 Sep 01. pii: S0753-3322(21)00916-1. [Epub ahead of print]143 112132
      Fibrosis is the endpoint of pathological remodeling. This process contributes to the pathogenesis of several chronic disorders and aging-associated organ damage. Different molecular cascades contribute to this process. TGF-β, WNT, and YAP/TAZ signaling pathways have prominent roles in this process. A number of long non-coding RNAs and microRNAs have been found to regulate organ fibrosis through modulation of the activity of related signaling pathways. miR-144-3p, miR-451, miR-200b, and miR-328 are among microRNAs that participate in the pathology of cardiac fibrosis. Meanwhile, miR-34a, miR-17-5p, miR-122, miR-146a, and miR-350 contribute to liver fibrosis in different situations. PVT1, MALAT1, GAS5, NRON, PFL, MIAT, HULC, ANRIL, and H19 are among long non-coding RNAs that participate in organ fibrosis. We review the impact of long non-coding RNAs and microRNAs in organ fibrosis and aging-related pathologies.
    Keywords:  Aging; LncRNA; MiRNA; Organ fibrosis
  38. Int J Mol Sci. 2021 Aug 27. pii: 9306. [Epub ahead of print]22(17):
      Age is a major risk factor for severe outcome of the 2019 coronavirus disease (COVID-19). In this study, we followed the hypothesis that particularly patients with accelerated epigenetic age are affected by severe outcomes of COVID-19. We investigated various DNA methylation datasets of blood samples with epigenetic aging signatures and performed targeted bisulfite amplicon sequencing. Overall, epigenetic clocks closely correlated with the chronological age of patients, either with or without acute respiratory distress syndrome. Furthermore, lymphocytes did not reveal significantly accelerated telomere attrition. Thus, these biomarkers cannot reliably predict higher risk for severe COVID-19 infection in elderly patients.
    Keywords:  COVID-19; DNA methylation; SARS-CoV-2; age; epigenetic clocks; telomere
  39. Oxid Med Cell Longev. 2021 ;2021 2308317
      Persistently unrepaired DNA damage has been identified as a causative factor for vascular ageing. We have previously shown that a defect in the function or expression of the DNA repair endonuclease ERCC1 (excision repair cross complement 1) in mice leads to accelerated, nonatherosclerotic ageing of the vascular system from as early as 8 weeks after birth. Removal of ERCC1 from endothelial alone partly explains this ageing, as shown in endothelial-specific Ercc1 knockout mice. In this study, we determined vascular ageing due to DNA damage in vascular smooth muscle cells, as achieved by smooth muscle-selective genetic removal of ERCC1 DNA repair in mice (SMC-KO: SM22αCre+ Ercc1fl/-). Vascular ageing features in SMC-KO and their wild-type littermates (WT: SM22αCre+ Ercc1fl/+) were examined at the age of 14 weeks and 25 weeks. Both SMC-KO and WT mice were normotensive. Compared to WT, SMC-KO showed a reduced heart rate, fractional shortening, and cardiac output. SMC-KO showed progressive features of nonatherosclerotic vascular ageing as they aged from 14 to 25 weeks. Decreased subcutaneous microvascular dilatation and increased carotid artery stiffness were observed. Vasodilator responses measured in aortic rings in organ baths showed decreased endothelium-dependent and endothelium-independent responses, mostly due to decreased NO-cGMP signaling. NADPH oxidase 2 and phosphodiesterase 1 inhibition improved dilations. SMC-KO mice showed elevated levels of various cytokines that indicate a balance shift in pro- and anti-inflammatory pathways. In conclusion, SMC-KO mice showed a progressive vascular ageing phenotype in resistant and conduit arteries that is associated with cardiac remodeling and contractile dysfunction. The changes induced by DNA damage might be limited to VSMC but eventually affect EC-mediated responses. The fact that NADPH oxidase 2 as wells as phosphodiesterase 1 inhibition restores vasodilation suggests that both decreased NO bioavailability and cGMP degradation play a role in local vascular smooth muscle cell ageing induced by DNA damage.
  40. Biomed Pharmacother. 2021 Sep 07. pii: S0753-3322(21)00933-1. [Epub ahead of print]143 112149
      Age-related hearing loss (AHL) is the most common sensory disorder of aged population. Currently, one of the most important sources of experimental medicine for AHL is medicinal plants. This study performed the first investigation of the effect of thymoquinone (TQ), a potent antioxidant, on AHL. Here, we used inbred C57BL/6J mice (B6 mice) as a successful experimental model of the early onset of AHL. The behavioral assessment of hearing revealed that the injection of a high dose of TQ (40 mg/kg; TQ40) significantly improved the auditory sensitivity of B6 mice at all tested frequencies (8, 16 and 22 kHz). Histological sections of cochlea from B6 mice injected with a low dose (20 mg/kg; TQ20) and high dose showed relatively less degenerative signs in the modiolus, hair cells and spiral ligaments, the main constituents of the cochlea. In addition, TQ40 completely restored the normal pattern of hair cells in B6 mice, as shown in scanning electron micrographs. Our data indicated that TQ20 and TQ40 reduced levels of Bak1-mediated apoptosis in the cochlea of B6 mice. Interestingly, the level of Sirt1, a positive regulator of autophagy, was significantly increased in B6 mice administered TQ40. In conclusion, TQ relieves the symptoms of AHL by downregulating Bak1 and activating Sirt1 in the cochlea of B6 mice.
    Keywords:  Age-related hearing loss; Bak1; Cochlea; Sirt1; Thymoquinone
  41. Physiol Rev. 2021 09 08.
      During the COVID-19 pandemic, efforts have been made worldwide to develop effective therapies to address the devastating immune-mediated effects of SARS-CoV-2. With the exception of monoclonal antibody-mediated therapeutics and preventive approaches such as mass immunization, most experimental or repurposed drugs have failed in large randomized clinical trials ( The worldwide spread of SARS-CoV-2 virus revealed specific susceptibilities to the virus among the elderly and individuals with age-related syndromes. These populations were more likely to experience a hyper-immune response characterized by a treatment-resistant acute lung pathology accompanied by multiple organ failure. These observations underscore the interplay between the virus, the biology of aging, and outcomes observed in the most severe cases of SARS-CoV-2 infection. The ectoenzyme CD38 has been implicated in the process of 'inflammaging' in aged tissues (1). In a current publication, Horenstein et al. present evidence to support the hypothesis that the CD38 plays a central role in altered immunometabolism resulting from COVID-19 infection. The authors discuss a critical but under-appreciated trifecta of CD38-mediated NAD+ metabolism, aging, and COVID-19 immune response and speculate that the CD38/NAD+ axis is a promising therapeutic target for this disease (2).
    Keywords:  CD38; COVID-19; NAD; Nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide; inflammation
  42. Front Aging Neurosci. 2021 ;13 681498
      Increase in the quality of life, combined with drug strategies, has been studied as possibilities for improving memory and delaying the onset of neurodegenerative diseases. A previous study published by the group of the authors has shown that microdose lithium and enriched environment can improve memory in both mice and humans. To elucidate this relationship better, this study aimed to evaluate whether the chronic combination of these two strategies could increase healthy aging in Senescence Accelerated Mouse-Prone 8 (SAMP8). Animals were submitted to either one or both of these strategies until the age of 10 months when they were anesthetized and killed and their hippocampus was extracted. The untreated SAMP-8 group exhibited worse memory and reduced neuronal density with greater neurodegeneration and increased amyloid-β plaque density compared with the control group. Moreover, significant alterations in proteins related to long-term potentiation, such as, synaptophysin and brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), were observed in this group. The strategies used in the study maintained long-term memory, reduced anxiety, and increased neuroprotection. Both strategies were efficient in reducing neurodegeneration and increasing parameters related to memory maintenance. In many experiments, the combination of the two strategies was more effective in improving healthy aging. This study sheds light on the combination of strategies that choose to improve the quality of life and drugs with low side effects. Moreover, it opens perspectives for a new field of study for healthy aging.
    Keywords:  SAMP-8; active life expectancy; enriched environment; healthy aging; lithium carbonate; neuroprotection; senile plaques
  43. Blood Adv. 2021 Sep 08. pii: bloodadvances.2021004726. [Epub ahead of print]
      During aging, hematopoietic stem cell (HSC) function wanes with important biological and clinical implications for benign and malignant hematology, and other co-morbidities, such as cardiovascular disease. However, the molecular mechanisms regulating HSC aging remain incompletely defined. GATA2 haploinsufficiency driven clinical syndromes initially result in primary immunodeficiencies and routinely evolve into hematologic malignancies on acquisition of further epigenetic mutations in both young and older patients. Using a conditional mouse model of Gata2 haploinsufficiency, we discover that during aging Gata2 promotes HSC proliferation, monocytosis, and loss of the common lymphoid progenitor. Aging of Gata2 haploinsufficient mice also offsets enhanced HSC apoptosis and decreased granulocyte-macrophage progenitor number normally observed in young Gata2 haploinsufficient mice. Transplantation of elderly Gata2 haploinsufficient HSCs impairs HSC function with evidence of myeloid bias. Our data demonstrate that Gata2 regulates HSC aging and suggest the mechanisms by which Gata2 mediated HSC aging has an impact on the evolution of malignancies in GATA2 haploinsufficiency syndromes.