The research explains why Rapamycin may retard aging and Alzheimer ;
A proven approach to slow the process aging and associated diseases is dietary restriction. New research helps explain the action of a drug that appears to mimic that process -. Rapamycin
Rapamycin, an antibiotic and immunosuppressant approved for use about 15 years ago, has attracted great interest because of its apparent ability – at least in tests with laboratory animals – to emulate the ability of dietary restriction to help animals to live long and healthy
However. This medication has some drawbacks, including increased insulin resistance that could set the stage for diabetes. The new findings, published in Journals of Gerontology: Biological Sciences help explain why this happens and what can be done to address
They suggest that a combination of rapamycin and. another drug to offset this increase in insulin resistance may provide the benefits of this medicine without the unwanted side effect.
“this could be an important breakthrough if it helps us find a way to get the apparent benefits of rapamycin without increasing insulin resistance,” said Viviana Perez, assistant professor in the Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics in the OSU college of Science.
“could provide a way not only to increase life expectancy, but to address some age-related diseases and improve overall health,” Perez said. “We could find a way for people to not only live longer, but to live better and higher quality of life.”
age-related diseases include many of the degenerative diseases that affect billions of people worldwide and are among the leading causes of death :. disease, diabetes, cardiovascular disease and cancer, Alzheimer
laboratory mice that received rapamycin have reduced dependent decrease age in spontaneous activity, they demonstrated more fitness, improving cognition and cardiovascular health, had less cancer and lived substantially longer than mice fed a normal diet.
Rapamycin, first discovered from the soil of Easter Island or Rapa Nui in the South Pacific Ocean, is mainly used as an immunosuppressant to prevent rejection of organs and tissues. In recent years was also observed that it can function as a metabolic “signaling device” that inhibits a biological pathway that is found in almost all higher forms of life – the ability to detect when food has been eaten, the energy is available and which is fine for cell proliferation, protein synthesis and growth proceeding
called mTOR in mammals, the term “mammalian target of rapamycin”, this pathway has a critical evolutionary value -. an agency that helps prevent excessive cell growth and expansion when energy supplies are insufficient. That helps explain why some form of track has been preserved through a multitude of species, from yeast to fish to humans.
“dietary restriction is one of the few interventions that inhibit the mTOR pathway,” Perez said. “And a restricted diet in laboratory animals has been shown to increase life expectancy around 25-30 percent. Humans who consume fewer calories, such as some Asian cultures, also live longer.”
Apart from food intake in laboratory mice is about 40 percent fewer calories than normal, however, it has been found that another way to activate this pathway is rapamycin, which seems to have a significant impact even when used later in life. Some clinical trials in humans are underway to explore this potential.
A major drawback for long-term use of rapamycin, however, is the increase in insulin resistance observed in humans and laboratory animals. The new research identified why it is happening. We found that both dietary restriction and rapamycin inhibit lipid synthesis, but only dietary restriction increased oxidation of lipids in order to produce energy.
Rapamycin, however, allowed the accumulation of fatty acids and, eventually, increased insulin resistance, which in humans may lead to diabetes. However, metformin can solve that problem, and is already given to diabetic patients to increase some lipid oxidation. In laboratory tests, the combined use of rapamycin and metformin prevented unwanted side effect.
“If proven true use, then combined metformin and rapamycin for the treatment of aging and diseases associated with age in humans may be possible,” the researchers wrote in their conclusion.
This work was funded by the National Institutes of Health. Collaborators included researchers from the University of Oklahoma Center for Health Sciences, Medical Center of Oklahoma City VA, University of Michigan-Flint, and the Veterans Health System of South Texas.
“There is still important work to do, and may not be realistic to expect that humans what we have been able to achieve with laboratory animals,” Perez said. “People do not live in a cage and only eat the exact diet given to them. However, the potential of this work is exciting.”
The above story is based on materials provided by Oregon State University . . Note: Materials may be edited for content and length
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