新型长寿药,延长果蝇寿命16%
2016/04/14
日前,发表在《Cell Reports》上的一项研究表明,当给予低剂量的情绪稳定剂锂时,果蝇的寿命会延长16%。对于锂稳定情绪的作用机理,科学家们仍知之甚少,但是他们却发现了延缓衰老的新药物靶点,一种称作为GSK-3的分子。


日前,发表在《Cell Reports》上的一项研究表明,当给予低剂量的情绪稳定剂锂时,果蝇的寿命会延长16%。对于锂稳定情绪的作用机理,科学家们仍知之甚少,但是他们却发现了延缓衰老的新药物靶点,一种称作为糖原合酶激酶3(glycogen synthase kinase-3,GSK-3)的分子。

研究小组发现,锂通过阻断GSK-3,激活另一种称作为NRF-2的分子发挥抗衰老的作用。NRF-2存在于蠕虫、果蝇和哺乳动物(包括人类)中,对于保护细胞不受伤害非常重要。研究显示,不受基因组成的影响,雄性和雌性果蝇在成年期或生命更晚期被给予低剂量的锂后,寿命长于平均水平。同时,这种低剂量的锂对果蝇几乎没有副作用,它们能够正常进食,且产生了健康的后代。


具体来说,研究人员给160只成年果蝇服用了不同剂量的氯化锂,结果发现,高剂量的氯化锂会缩短果蝇寿命,而低剂量的氯化锂会使果蝇寿命平均延长16%,与对照氯化钠组相比,最高延长了18%。此外,仅一次治疗也观察到了锂延长寿命的作用。在果蝇生命的最后阶段接受一次治疗后寿命最高延长13%。

本文的通讯作者Dame Linda Partridge教授说:“我们的目标是找到干预衰老的方法,最终希望能够更长时间的保持健康。我们可以通过饮食、遗传学、药物等手段实现这一目标。在果蝇中看到的这一结果是令人鼓舞的,接下来我们将在更复杂的动物上进行下一步的研究,最终希望能够开发出相应的药物在人体进行测试。”


一直以来,抗衰老和长寿相关的研究总是会引起广泛的关注。除了探索衰老的机理、寻找关键基因、开发药物等研究外,最近发表在《Explorations in Economic History》上的一项研究称,姓名也会影响寿命。该项研究调查了1802年至1970年间的300万份死亡证明,发现取了Elijah、Moses等特色名字的黑人男子平均寿命比其它黑人男子长1岁。

参与该研究的经济学家Lisa D. Cook表示,研究排除了社会经济因素和环境因素,如单亲家庭、教育程度、职业类别等。许多有特色的名字都源于《圣经》,一种可能的理论是,起这类名字的人往往会在学术或其它活动中被寄予更高的标准,甚至暗含更强的家庭、教堂或社区关系。这些强大的社交网络帮助他们应对生活中的负面事件。

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