Separating cause from effect: how does insulin/IGF signalling control lifespan in worms, flies and mice?

M. D. W. Piper, C. Selman, J. J. McElwee, L. Partridge

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

108 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Ageing research has been revolutionized by the use of model organisms to discover genetic alterations that can extend lifespan. In the last 5 years alone, it has become apparent that single gene mutations in the insulin and insulin-like growth-factor signalling pathways can lengthen lifespan in worms, flies and mice, implying evolutionary conservation of mechanisms. Importantly, this research has also shown that these mutations can keep the animals healthy and disease-free for longer and can alleviate specific ageing-related pathologies. These findings are striking in view of the negative effects that disruption of these signalling pathways can also produce. Here, we summarize the body of work that has lead to these discoveries and point out areas of interest for future work in characterizing the genetic, molecular and biochemical details of the mechanisms to achieving a longer and healthier life.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)179-191
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Internal Medicine
Volume263
Issue number2
Early online date21 Jan 2008
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2008

Keywords

  • aging
  • animals
  • caenorhabditis elegans
  • drosophila melanogaster
  • insulin
  • insulin-like growth factor I
  • longevity
  • mice
  • models, animal
  • ageing
  • drosophila
  • insulin/IGF signalling
  • lifespan
  • mice
  • nematode Caenorhabditis elegans
  • adult drosophila-melanogaster
  • C-elegans
  • superoxide-dismutase
  • oxidative stress
  • longevity assurance
  • Alzheimers-disease
  • alpha-synuclein
  • neurodegenerative disease
  • Parkinsons-disease

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