PROTEIN CAN TURN OFF INFLAMMATION AND AGING


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by Bennett Daviss
Increasingly, scientists are viewing aging as a condition that can be slowed or perhaps even reversed.
The newest evidence comes from the University of California at Berkeley, where scientists have identified a family of proteins that control much of the process.
Medical research has found inflammation to be the root cause of many illnesses, from cancer to Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s diseases. It also helps set off many of the symptoms associated with aging – wrinkled skin, heart irregularities, and arthritis among them. Inflammation can become a routine frequent response to chronic stress, poor diet, repetitive motion, and other assaults on well-being.
The Berkeley researchers studied proteins in what’s called the “inflammasome,” a collection of protein molecules that spot threats to the body and set off an inflammation response to try to isolate an invader.
The group found that a protein called SIRT2 can moderate, or even turn off, the inflammation response.
Mice bred with a genetic inability to produce SIRT2 showed greater inflammation responses than normal as they aged; mice who had the ability to produce SIRT2 in their inflammasomes showed fewer typical signs of aging.
The SIRT2-positive mice also showed greater insulin sensitivity, a key factor in reversing diabetes.
TRENDPOST: The SIRT2 protein could be a key factor not only in slowing or reversing symptoms of aging, but also in curing metabolic illnesses such as diabetes. Bioscientists will research the possibility of drugs or genetic therapy based on this protein.

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