Center for Computational Molecular Biology

Interactions May Matter Most for Longevity

A new study of the biology of aging shows that complex interactions among diet, mitochondrial DNA and nuclear DNA appear to influence lifespan at least as much as single factors alone. The findings may help scientists better understand the underlying mechanisms of aging and explain why studies of single factors sometimes produce contradictory results.

PROVIDENCE, R.I. [Brown University] — If studying a single gene or a diet that might extend longevity is like searching for a fountain of youth, then a new study calls for looking at something more like the whole watershed. Brown University biologists who experimentally throttled three such factors in fruit flies found that lifespan depended more on interactions among the factors than on the factors themselves.

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