Contact: Will Sansom
|Arlan Richardson, Ph.D., professor of cellular and structural biology, noted that the absence of the copy of the IGF1 gene did not produce a significant increase in the lifespan of mice. He is one of two principal investigators of the study.|
Printer Friendly Format
SAN ANTONIO (Nov. 23, 2011) — Scientists studying longevity thought it might be good to lack a copy of a gene, called IGF1 receptor, that is important in insulin signaling. Previous studies showed invertebrates that lacked the copy lived longer, even if their bodies were less responsive to insulin, the hormone that lowers blood sugar.
A new study from The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio challenges this theory. Knocking out one copy of the gene failed to increase the life span of male mice, and it only modestly increased the life span of female littermates. Results differ from invertebrates to mice
Martin Adamo, Ph.D., professor of biochemistry, and Arlan Richardson, Ph.D., professor of cellular and structural biology, lead the laboratories that conducted the study. “Our data show insufficiency of this insulin-signaling gene does not produce a robust increase in life span as previously reported in invertebrates,” Dr. Richardson said.
|Martin Adamo, Ph.D., professor of biochemistry, is the second principal investigator of the study.|
Dr. Adamo added, “This demonstrates that reducing insulin signaling through the IGF1 pathway in mammals does not play the same role in aging that is observed in invertebrates.”
A receptor is a molecule on a cell’s membrane that receives chemical signals. Knocking down the genetic instructions that make IGF1 receptors results in reduced insulin signaling.The study
is described in the Nov. 23 edition of the journal PLoS ONE
. Dr. Richardson is director of the Barshop Institute for Longevity and Aging Studies at the UT Health Science Center and is a senior research career scientist with the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs.
This work was supported by a grant from the National Institutes of Health, National Institute on Aging, RO1AG026012, to Martin Adamo, Ph.D., principal investigator, and a VA Merit Grant from the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs to Arlan Richardson, Ph.D., principal investigator.# # #The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio
, one of the country’s leading health sciences universities, ranks in the top 3 percent of all institutions worldwide receiving federal funding. Research and other sponsored program activity totaled $228 million in fiscal year 2010. The university’s schools of medicine, nursing, dentistry, health professions and graduate biomedical sciences have produced approximately 26,000 graduates. The $744 million operating budget supports eight campuses in San Antonio, Laredo, Harlingen and Edinburg. For more information on the many ways “We make lives better®,”