Navigation Links
Scientists identify genes that may signal long life in naked mole-rats

Scientists at the University of Liverpool have identified high levels of a number of genes in the naked mole-rat that may suggest why they live longer than other rodents and demonstrate resistance to age-related diseases.

The Liverpool team has recently generated the first whole-genome sequencing data of the naked mole-rat - a rodent that lives for more than 30 years and is resistant to cancer - to understand its longevity and resistance to disease. Scientists, in collaboration with Harvard University, have now compared the levels of its genes with genes in wild mice to investigate what makes naked mole-rats different to other rodents.

They found that genes associated with mitochondria, that provide energy to cells, and genes that affect respiration and the decisions cells make, are expressed at unusually high levels in the naked mole-rat compared to the same genes in wild mice. In animals and humans these genes are thought to play a role in influencing and adapting to cell damage, which is thought to be one of the significant causes of ageing.

Naked mole-rats, however, also have increased levels of oxidative stress, which is an imbalance in reactive molecules containing oxygen. This can lead to mutations in the cells and the growth of cancerous tumours. To date, cancer has not been detected in the naked mole-rat, but these new findings suggest that the rodent has mechanisms of regulating gene responses to limit the potential negative impact of oxidative stress on cells. The research will help scientists focus on particular areas of the genome to further understanding into how the body ages.

Dr Joao Pedro Magalhaes, from the University's Institute of Integrative Biology, said: "The naked mole-rat is native to the deserts of East Africa and has unique physical traits that allow it to survive in harsh environments for many years. It has a lack of pain sensation in its skin and has a low metabolic rate that allows it to live underground with limited oxygen supply.

"It has been of interest to scientists for some time and we hope that by studying its genome it will help us understand the mechanisms of ageing and how the body protects itself from disease.

"These findings add further evidence to research that suggests genes responsible for mitochondria and oxireduction are associated with the ageing processes. It also provides some clues as to how naked mole-rats protect themselves against high levels of oxidative stress. The high levels of genes connected to energy production and cell decision-making systems may help in creating an intracellular environment that prevents cancer and other age-related diseases.

"This work provides candidate genes for specifying resistance to ageing and cancer that we can build on in future studies. The next stage of the research will be to observe what happens to the cells if gene levels change from high to low and vice-versa."

The research is published in the journal, PLoS ONE.


Contact: Samantha Martin
University of Liverpool

Related medicine news :

1. Scientists Pinpoint Area of Brain That Fears Losing Money
2. Scientists Discover How HIV Is Transmitted Between Men
3. Prevention Is Key Research Goal for Premature Babies, Scientists Say
4. Scientists Discover Molecular Pathway for Organ Tissue Regeneration and Repair
5. Scientists find donut-shaped structure of enzyme involved in energy metabolism
6. Neuroscientists reveal new links that regulate brain electrical activity
7. Two UCSF Scientists to Receive Prestigious Dementia Research Honor
8. Johns Hopkins scientists develop personalized blood tests for cancer using whole genome sequencing
9. Scientists Spot Genetic Fingerprints of Individual Cancers
10. Scientists Unravel Mysteries of Intelligence
11. MSU scientists develop more effective method of predicting lead-poisoning risk
Post Your Comments:
(Date:6/25/2016)... ... June 25, 2016 , ... "With 30 hand-drawn hand gesture animations, FCPX ... Austin - CEO of Pixel Film Studios. , ProHand Cartoon’s package transforms over ... Cut Pro X . Simply select a ProHand generator and drag it above media ...
(Date:6/25/2016)... , ... June 25, 2016 , ... As a lifelong ... Cum Laude and his M.D from the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA. ... to Los Angeles to complete his fellowship in hematology/oncology at the UCLA-Olive View-Cedars Sinai ...
(Date:6/25/2016)... ... ... On Friday, June 10, Van Mitchell, Secretary of the Maryland Department of Health ... of their exemplary accomplishments in worksite health promotion. , The Wellness at Work Awards ... at the BWI Marriott in Linthicum Heights. iHire was one of 42 businesses to ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... CA (PRWEB) , ... June 24, 2016 , ... A ... procedures that most people are unfamiliar with. The article goes on to state that ... but also many of these less common operations such as calf and cheek reduction. ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... June 24, 2016 , ... June 19, 2016 is World Sickle Cell ... pain and the benefits of holistic treatments, Serenity Recovery Center of Marne, ... Cell Disease. , Sickle Cell Disease (SCD) is a disorder of the red blood ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:6/23/2016)... , June 23, 2016  In a startling report released today, ... their residents by lacking a comprehensive, proven plan to eliminate prescription ... definitive ranking of how states are tackling the worst drug crisis ... four states – Kentucky , New ... Vermont . Of the 28 failing states, three – ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... , June 23, 2016 ... CAPR ), a biotechnology company focused on ... today announced that patient enrollment in its ongoing ... Duchenne) has exceeded 50% of its 24-patient target. ... in the third quarter of 2016, and to ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... , June 23, 2016 , ... Thursday, July 7, 2016 , , , , LOCATION: , ... , , , , EXPERT PANELISTS:  , , , Frost ... Industry Analyst, Christi Bird; Senior Industry Analyst, Divyaa Ravishankar and Unmesh ... The global pharmaceutical industry is witnessing an exceptional era. Several ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: