Deleterious consequences of antioxidant supplementation on lifespan in a wild-derived mammal

Colin Selman, Jane S. McLaren, Andrew R. Collins, Garry G. Duthie, John R. Speakman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

30 Citations (Scopus)
5 Downloads (Pure)

Abstract

While oxidative damage owing to reactive oxygen species (ROS) often increases with advancing age and is associated with many age-related diseases, its causative role in ageing is controversial. In particular, studies that have attempted to modulate ROS-induced damage, either upwards or downwards, using antioxidant or genetic approaches, generally do not show a predictable effect on lifespan. Here, we investigated whether dietary supplementation with either vitamin E (a-tocopherol) or vitamin C (ascorbic acid) affected oxidative damage and lifespan in short-tailed field voles, Microtus agrestis. We predicted that antioxidant supplementation would reduce ROS-induced oxidative damage and increase lifespan relative to unsupplemented controls. Antioxidant supplementation for nine months reduced hepatic lipid peroxidation, but DNA oxidative damage to hepatocytes and lymphocytes was unaffected. Surprisingly, antioxidant supplementation significantly shortened lifespan in voles maintained under both cold (7+28C) and warm (22+28C) conditions. These data further question the predictions of free-radical theory of ageing and critically, given our previous research in mice, indicate that similar levels of antioxidants can induce widely different interspecific effects on lifespan.
Original languageEnglish
Article number20130432
Number of pages4
JournalBiology Letters
Volume9
Issue number4
Early online date3 Jul 2013
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 23 Aug 2013

Keywords

  • oxidative damage
  • ageing
  • longevity
  • vitamin E
  • vitamin C
  • vole

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