RESVERATROL MAKES MORE TELOMERASe
Background on DNA:
Resveratrol: Since the discovery of DNA as the genetic material of all living organisms, fundamental dogma in biology states that the pecking order of control of cellular molecules puts DNA in front. DNA passes the information next to RNA, and RNA finally passes the genetic information to proteins.
With this in mind, scientists have been studying how DNA is regulated, changed, or mutated and how these DNA modifications ultimately lead to protein modifications. Since it is proteins that make up the bulk of a cell’s structure and carry out desirable cellular functions and undesirable ones like aging, understanding how DNA is regulated is needless to say very important.
Resveratrol SIRT-1 Regulates Key DNA Genes:
Case in point, SIRT-1, a protein that promotes many of the health benefits associated with the extension of lifespan in various organisms, has been proven to regulate the DNA sequence of key longevity DNA genes. Specifically, in 2008 a group of scientists published the observation that human fibroblast cells artificially made to express more SIRT-1 delayed the onset of aging in those cells. SIRT-1 is a protein that can modify and therefore regulate DNA.
That same study also provided clues into which cellular pathways may be involved but not a mechanism for how cellular life extension actually takes place.
Activating SIRT-1 Using Different Techniques:
Fast forward to the present. In what is very exciting news, an article accepted but yet to be published, a group from Japan led by Yoshinori Katakura has repeated some of those experimental observations but very importantly added a potential explanation for the mechanisms for the delay in aging in human fibroblast cells (Biochemical and Biophysical Research Communications, 2011).
In this new article, the researchers overexpressed SIRT-1 protein via three methods. First, they genetically modified the cells by introducing an extra copy of the SIRT-1 gene (which causes more SIRT-1 protein to be made), second, they treated the cells with resveratrol (which also causes more SIRT-1 protein to be made), and finally, they starved the cells (this method also causes more SIRT-1 protein to be made).
Resveratrol was shown to activate SIRT-1 and delay cell aging:
Of these three methods of SIRT-1 up-regulation, it is fortunately that resveratrol alone was sufficient to replicate the observed results since this method is not insulting to our body when compared to the other two methods. The results from the researchers similar to what had been published before observed that the more SIRT-1 protein present, the longer the cells grew and the more the aging features of these cells were delayed.
Researchers Conclude Resveratrol Leads To More Telomerase Being Made:
Furthermore and demonstrated for the first time in fibroblast cells, the extra SIRT-1 protein present in the cells caused specific RNA needed for telomerase protein to be made. In essence, these authors conclude that the extra SIRT-1 protein induced by resveratrol (and by other methods) leads to more telomerase protein being made.
And given the fact that telomerase protein activity has been shown to be sufficient to cause normal human epithelial cells to replicate indefinitely, a mechanism for cellular life extension is pushed forward. Yet another bit of information for strengthening the case in establishing the importance of understanding how DNA is regulated and how this can lead to tangible practical results.
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