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Can autophagy promote longevity?

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Abstract

Organismal lifespan can be extended by genetic manipulation of cellular processes such as histone acetylation, the insulin/IGF-1 (insulin-like growth factor 1) pathway or the p53 system. Longevity-promoting regimens, including caloric restriction and inhibition of TOR with rapamycin, resveratrol or the natural polyamine spermidine, have been associated with autophagy (a cytoprotective self-digestive process) and in some cases were reported to require autophagy for their effects. We summarize recent developments that outline these links and hypothesize that clearing cellular damage by autophagy is a common denominator of many lifespan-extending manipulations.

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Figure 1: Linking different lifespan-prolonging treatments to autophagy.
Figure 2: Linking autophagy-mediated lifespan extension to cytoprotection.

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Acknowledgements

G.K. is supported by grants from the Ligue Nationale contre le Cancer (équipe labellisée), Fondation pour la Recherche Médicale, the European Union, Cancéropôle Ile-de-France, Institut National du Cancer and Agence Nationale pour la Recherche. F.M. is supported by grants from the Austrian Science Fund (S-9304-B05, LIPOTOX) and European Commission (APOSYS). N.T. is supported by grants from the European Research Council (ERC), the European Commission 6th and 7th Framework programs and the European Molecular Biology Organization (EMBO).

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Correspondence to Guido Kroemer.

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Madeo, F., Tavernarakis, N. & Kroemer, G. Can autophagy promote longevity?. Nat Cell Biol 12, 842–846 (2010). https://doi.org/10.1038/ncb0910-842

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