Novato, CA Scientists who have been successful in delaying mammalian aging with genetic, dietary and pharmacological approaches have developed a research strategy to expand Geroscience research directed at extending human healthspan. The strategy comes at a critical time, given the dramatic increase in the elderly population and a growing recognition that aging is the greatest risk factor for a majority of the chronic diseases that drive later-life disability and death. The strategy is set forth in a commentary published in the journal Cell.
The scientists took part in the first summit of the NIH Geroscience Interest Group (GSIG) held last year on the NIH campus. The National Institutes of Health is made up of 27 different components called Institutes and Centers. Each has its own specific research agenda. The GSIG is aimed at promoting new pathways for collaboration, both within the NIH and with its funded researchers, specifically within the context of aging. The NIH was created and organized long before scientists began seriously exploring the possibility of altering the aging process.
“We have high hopes that our research strategy will help move collaborative efforts to the next level,” said Brian Kennedy, PhD, President and CEO of the Buck Institute and the lead author of the commentary. “What has come out of our work is a keen understanding that the factors driving aging are highly intertwined and that in order to extend healthspan we need an integrated approach to health and disease with the understanding that biological systems change with age.”
The “Pillars of Aging” and research goals are detailed in the following table:
The authors make specific recommendations for each of the pillars, noting that understanding the interplay between these seven pillars is critical.
Credit: Cell, First Author et al. 2014
Citation: Aging: a common driver of chronic diseases and a target for novel interventions Cell, November 6, 2014
Additional authors include:
Shelley L. Berger, Penn Epigenetics Program; Department of Cell and Developmental Biology; Department of Genetics and Department of Biology, Perelman School of Medicine, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA; Anne Brunet, Department of Genetics, Glenn Center for the Biology of Aging, Stanford University, Stanford, CA, USA; Judith Campisi and Gordon J. Lithgow, Buck Institute for Research on Aging, Novato, CA USA; Ana Maria Cuervo, Department of Developmental and Molecular Biology, Institute for Aging Research, Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Bronx, New York, USA; Elissa S. Epel, Department of Psychiatry, School of Medicine, University of California, San Francisco, CA, USA; Claudio Franceschi, IRCCS Institute of Neurological Sciences of Bologna, Bellaria Hospital, Bologna, Italy, C.I.G., Interdepartmental Center ‘L. Galvani’ for Integrated Studies on Bioinformatics, Biophysics, and Biocomplexity, University of Bologna, Bologna, Italy, DIMES, Department of Experimental, Diagnostic and Specialty Medicine, University of Bologna, Bologna, Italy; Richard I. Morimoto, Department of Biochemistry, Molecular Biology, and Cell Biology, Rice Institute for Biomedical Research, Northwestern University, Evanston, Illinois, USA; Jeffrey E. Pessin, Department of Medicine and Molecular Pharmacology, Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Bronx, New York, USA; Thomas A. Rando, Glenn Center for the Biology of Aging, Stanford University, Stanford, CA, USA, Department of Neurology and Neurological Sciences, Stanford University School of Medicine, Stanford, California 94305; Center for Tissue Regeneration, Repair and Restoration, Veterans Administration Palo Alto Health Care System, Palo Alto, CA USA; Arlan Richardson, Donald W Reynolds Endowed Chair of Aging Research, Professor of Geriatric Medicine, University of Oklahoma Health Science Center, Oklahoma City VA Medical Center, Oklahoma City, OK USA; Eric E. Schadt, Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, Department of Genetics and Genomic Sciences and the Icahn Institute for Genomics and Multiscale Biology, New York, NY USA; Tony Wyss-Coray, Department of Neurology and Neurological Sciences, Stanford University School of Medicine, Stanford, California 94305; Center for Tissue Regeneration, Repair and Restoration, Veterans Administration Palo Alto Health Care System, Palo Alto, CA USA; and Felipe Sierra, Division of Aging Biology, National Institute on Aging, Bethesda, MD, USA