Aging Research Headlines
First-Ever National Heart Valve Disease Awareness Day Set for February 22
The Alliance for Aging Research announced that February 22, 2017 will serve as the first-ever National Heart Valve Disease Awareness Day, with annual observances to follow. Heart valve disease (HVD) affects more than five million people, but awareness remains low. The day will serve as a way to raise awareness and educate the public about the disease. Learn more here.
TZAP Protein May Regulate Telomere Length
Longer telomeres are thought to be an indicator of a longer lifespan of cells in your body. However, extremely long telomeres could increase the risk of cancer. Researchers at The Scripps Research Institute (TSRI) say they have found a protein, called TZAP, that helps to control the telomere trimming process. TSRI researchers say TZAP allows for the lengthening of telomeres, but ensures they do not become too long. Learn more here.
Two Common Plants May Help Delay Neurodegenerative Disease
A research team at the University of Malta say chemicals from the prickly pear and brown seaweed plants help stave off the effects of diseases, like Alzheimer's and Parkinson's disease. The researchers found the chemicals in the plants interfered with the buildup of protein clumps. "We believe that the discovery of bioactive agents that target pathways that are hit by multiple neurodegenerative conditions is the most viable approach in our current fight against brain disorders," said lead study author Dr. Ruben J. Cauchi. Learn more about the study here.
New Molecular Pathway May Help Identify Drug Therapies for Dementia
Scientists at Rutgers University recently published findings in Cell Reports that found the CRTC1 protein enhances memory through the control of gene expression. The scientists also found that CRTC1 activates the FGF1 gene, which controls essential gene functions and plays a role in tissue repair. "Our group has been unraveling molecular mechanisms that maintain and improve memory, and what our research tells us is that there are different answers to controlling and improving memory," said Gleb Shumyatsky, co-author of the study. Learn more here.
Coffee Could Be Key to Slowing Down Aging, Stanford Researchers Say
Researchers at Stanford University conducted a study that found older people who consumed caffeine had lower levels of inflammation. The researchers found that people who drank more than five cups of coffee each day exhibited extremely low levels of inflammation. Learn more here.
Removing Senescent Cells May Prevent Chemotherapy Side Effects, Researchers Say
Chemotherapy is a common treatment against cancer, but researchers have found that chemotherapy triggers an inflammatory stress response called cellular senescence. This response is the cause of side effects and relapse among those with cancer. Researchers have found that the adverse effects of chemotherapy and cancer relapses are eliminated when senescent cells are removed. Learn more here.
Bone Marrow Aging and the PTH Receptor: A Model of Integrative Physiology, National Institutes of Health (NIH), Bethesda, Md., February 1
Join the Trans-NIH GeroScience Interest Group (GSIG) for an upcoming seminar, featuring Dr. Cliff Rosen of the Center for Clinical and Translational Research at the Maine Medical Center Research Institute. Dr. Rosen's laboratory studies "mesenchymal stem cell fate as it relates to the switch between pre-adipocytes and pre-osteoblasts." He is currently working on a project, supported by the NIH, that centers around the origin and function of bone marrow fat cells. The seminar will take place at NIH's main campus, from 12 p.m. to 1 p.m. on February 1.
Progeria Research Foundation Seeks Proposals for Research on Hutchinson-Gilford Progeria Syndrome, March 21, 2017
The Progeria Research Foundation (PRF) is the only organization in the world dedicated to discovering treatments and the cure for Progeria and its aging-related disorders. Progeria is a rare, fatal, "premature aging" disease that affects children, who die of heart disease (heart attacks or stroke) at an average of 14 years - the same heart disease that affects millions of normal aging adults.
PRF encourages proposals in the areas listed below. Investigators are not limited to applications that address these priorities, but rather are encouraged to use them to better understand the needs of the field at this time.
PRF is seeking proposals that address the following priorities:
1. Discovery of biological markers of disease in HGPS that can be assessed in human and/or mouse samples. Highest priority will be given to those markers that can be assayed in easily obtainable human samples such as blood, urine, and cheek swabs. In addition, proposals that explore biomarker relevance to disease process and /or change in markers with disease treatment are encouraged.
2. Discovery and/or testing of candidate treatment compounds in both cell based and mouse models of HGPS. Of note, proposals should test compounds in a progerin-producing mouse model as the priority. Comparisons to other mouse models of disease, such as ZMPSTE24 -/- and other non-progerin producing mouse models is acceptable, but only as a comparison to progerin-producing models.
Visit the PRF Web site for complete program information.