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Ageing is the process during which structural and functional changes accumulate in an organism as a result of the passage of time. The changes manifest as a decline from the organism’s peak fertility and physiological functions until death.
Sperm-activated lysosomes enhance proteostasis in nematode oocytes just before fertilization; this could prevent transmission of damaged proteins to the next generation and may explain the immortality of the germ-cell lineage.
Cells activate a transcriptional response known as the mitochondrial unfolded protein response (UPRmt) when mitochondrial integrity and function are impaired to promote their recovery. Recent insights into the regulation, mechanisms and functions of the UPRmt have uncovered important links to ageing and ageing-associated diseases.
Identifying the gene polymorphisms that are the foundations of variation in glia–neuron signalling in Caenorhabditis elegans provides insight into highly variable age-related declines in worm behaviours.
The diet consumed during development can have long-lasting effects on adult physiology. Here, the authors show that developmental undernutrition in Drosophila extends lifespan by inhibiting the production of toxic lipids, called autotoxins, on the adult body surface.
Genetic variation in a neuropeptide signalling pathway regulates age-related declines in health in nematode worms. This discovery points to a mechanism that influences individual differences in ageing. See Article p.198
Recent research has identified sympathetic neuron–associated macrophages in adipose tissue that take up and degrade catecholamines released from neurons. Obesity and aging enhance this system, decreasing responses to cold stress and starvation.