Volume 1 Issue 3, March 2021
News & Views
Food odors decrease longevity via a brain–gut axis
Zhang et al. describe a neural circuit that reduces lifespan when food-restricted worms smell food. This circuit signals the intestine via octopamine, the invertebrate homolog of norepinephrine, to activate AMPKα. Importantly, norepinephrine signaling also activates AMPKα in mammalian cells, suggesting a conserved mechanism.
Youthfulness begins in youth
Chronological age fails to capture how the process of aging differs between individuals. Variability in rates of biological aging in youth is related to anatomical and functional differences already visible by midlife. This portends substantially different aging outcomes that have individual- and societal-level implications.
Dysregulated miRNAs mark Parkinson’s disease progression
Biomarkers for Parkinson’s disease are critical to our efforts to identify disease-modifying therapies. Kern et al. document potential microRNA (miRNA) biomarkers and trends in miRNA regulation that occur in a bimodal distribution with age.
Healthy aging and the blood–brain barrier
The authors review how the blood–brain barrier, a regulatory interface that controls interactions between the blood and central nervous system, changes during healthy aging, and discuss how some of these changes may predispose to age-associated diseases.
Olfactory perception of food abundance regulates dietary restriction-mediated longevity via a brain-to-gut signal
The authors found that the olfactory perception of food abundance can regulate the impact of dietary restriction on longevity in Caenorhabditis elegans. They show that food odors act on olfactory circuitry that signals the gut via octopamine to suppress dietary restriction-induced longevity.
Short and dysfunctional telomeres sensitize the kidneys to develop fibrosis
This study demonstrates that short and dysfunctional telomeres sensitize kidneys to develop fibrosis and enhance the genetic program associated with epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition in two mouse models of kidney fibrosis.
Age-dependent decline in remyelination capacity is mediated by apelin–APJ signaling
Ito et al. show that regeneration in the aging brain is impaired due to reduced expression of the apelin receptor APJ. Circulating apelin signals oligodendrocytes via APJ to support remyelination, and this pathway can be restored in older mice with an APJ agonist.
Disparities in the pace of biological aging among midlife adults of the same chronological age have implications for future frailty risk and policy
A cohort study tracking 20-year age-related declines in multiple organ systems finds that, already by midlife, those aging fastest showed cognitive declines, signs of brain aging, diminished sensory–motor function and negative views about aging.
Deep sequencing of sncRNAs reveals hallmarks and regulatory modules of the transcriptome during Parkinson’s disease progression
The authors present a small noncoding RNA atlas characterizing two longitudinal Parkinson’s disease cohorts and reveal potential biomarkers for disease detection, their relation to molecular hallmarks of PD and regulatory disease-progression modules.