Tech UPTechnologyRecycling fat allows you to live longer

Recycling fat allows you to live longer

gusanoScientists from the Sanford-Burnham Medical Research Institute in La Jolla, California (United States), have analyzed how the interaction between two cellular processes, autophagy and lipid metabolism, influences the life of wormsCaenorhabditis elegans. “The worm that was used in this study lives longer than normal worms, but until now we did not know why,” explains Malene Hansen. In a study published in the journal Current Biology, Hansen and his colleagues found that increased autophagy has an anti-aging effect, possibly by promoting the activity of a fat-digesting enzyme. “In other words, it seems thatrecycling fat is beneficial for worms“, concludes the researcher.

It has been known for some time that non-germline worms live longer than normal worms, specifically up to 25% longer. The funny thing is that although they cannot reproduce, germ-line worms have gonads, and these worms continue to produce all the fat that they normally produce eggs with. In a series of experiments, scientists observed that when worms have more fat than they need, they set in motion a seemingly futile cycle of fat breakdown and resynthesization. “We have observed that this fat breakdown is really beneficial, and that it may not be so useless after all,” they explain.

Theautofagia, a major cellular mechanism for digesting and recycling organic contents, has become the subject of intense scientific scrutiny in recent years, particularly since the process has beenimplicated in many human diseases, including cancer and Alzheimer’s. This study provides a more detailed understanding of the role autophagy and lipid metabolism play in aging.

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