advertisement
08 December 2008

Fasting boosts longevity in animals

Fasting may help some species of animals to live longer, according to research that highlights a key gene which alters the way glucose is processed.

0
Fasting may help some species of animals to live longer, according to research that highlights a key gene which alters the way glucose is processed.

Scientists at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Baltimore, found that mice which had been made to fast had higher levels in their livers of a protein called SIRT1.

Part of molecular cascade
SIRT1 is part of a molecular cascade that switches on genes that produce glucose.

It has been implicated in ageing, through a cell-damaging process called oxidative stress, and in potentially fatal disorders involving glucose metabolism, such as diabetes.

Previous research has linked the equivalent gene for SIRT1 in yeast and nematode worms - two standard species used in laboratories - with a longer lifespan.

A long way to go
This is the first time the proximity has been made among mammals, which are far more complex organisms. However, a long way has to go before establishing any link between fasting and longevity among humans.

The study appears on Thursday in the British weekly science journal Nature. – (AFP)

 
NEXT ON HEALTH24X
advertisement

Read Health24’s Comments Policy

Comment on this story
0 comments
Comments have been closed for this article.

Live healthier

Dangerous winter sun »

Why female students ignore the risks of indoor tanning Can rooibos protect you from the effects of UVB exposure?

Skin cancer always a risk – even in winter

During winter, the risk of skin cancer doesn’t disappear. CyberDoc talks to us about when to see your doctor about a strange-looking mole or spot.

Did you know? »

The 5 saltiest foods may surprise you Craving salt? Your genes may be the reason

10 fascinating facts about salt

The one thing that fast foods, whether it be chips, hamburgers, pretzels or fried chicken have in common, is loads of salt.