Anti-Aging Benefits of Caloric Restriction Demonstrated at the Cellular Level – Innovita Research

Anti-Aging Benefits of Caloric Restriction Demonstrated at the Cellular Level

A study published in the academic journal Cell on 27 February 2020 concludes that reducing one’s caloric intake could reduce inflammation throughout the body, delay the onset of age-related diseases, and prolong lifespan.

“We already knew that calorie restriction increases life span, but now we’ve shown all the changes that occur at a single-cell level to cause that,” said senior author Professor Juan Carlos Izpisua Belmonte. “This gives us targets that we may eventually be able to act on with drugs to treat aging in humans.”

In the study, Belmonte and colleagues compared the health of rats who ate 30 per cent fewer calories to rats on normal diets. The experiment took place over a period of 9 months – from age 18 months to 27 months, which is roughly equivalent to a human following a calorie-restricted diet from age 50 to age 70.

Throughout the study, the researchers isolated and analysed a total of 168,703 cells from 40 cell types in 56 individual rats to identify the activity levels of different genes, and examined the overall composition of cell types within any given tissue.

Restricting calories has a measurable positive effect on many age-related diseases and other changes in the body. Image:

Upon comparison, the research team found that as many as 57 per cent of the age-related changes in cell composition identified in rats on normal diets did not occur in their peers put on a calorie-restricted diet.

The cells and genes most affected by the diet were those related to immunity, inflammation and lipid metabolism. Rats in the intervention group had a significantly lower number of immune cells across their bodies and much less inflammatory gene activation in brown adipose tissue.

One of the key findings of the study was that Ybx1 – a transcription factor which scientists believe to be related to aging processes in the body – was significantly altered by the diet in 23 different cell types.

“People say that ‘you are what you eat,’ and we’re finding that to be true in lots of ways,” said co-author of the paper Concepcion Rodriguez Esteban. “The state of your cells as you age clearly depends on your interactions with your environment, which includes what and how much you eat.”

The team is now working on identifying aging drug targets and developing different strategies which could be deployed to increase the human life and health span.

Sources: abstract,