Our Privacy Statement & Cookie Policy

By continuing to browse our site you agree to our use of cookies, revised Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can change your cookie settings through your browser.

I agree

Scientists identify new gene that may resist aging, kill pests




A team of Chinese scientists has identified a longevity gene that may potentially enhance human resistance to aging and become a new target for managing pests.

Mitochondria, as the powerhouses of the cell, play a pivotal role in cellular energy production and are closely linked to the aging process. Research on extending lifespan through optimizing mitochondrial function have garnered considerable interest across the scientific community.

Previous research has predominantly concentrated on the mitochondria, while comparatively less emphasis has been placed on the influence of cell nuclei, which have undergone a long-term co-evolutionary process alongside the mitochondria.

The researchers from Zhejiang University and the Center for Excellence in Molecular Plant Sciences under the Chinese Academy of Sciences analyzed evolutionary changes of mitochondrial and nuclear genomes from 472 insects, and identified 75 nuclear genes that co-evolve with mitochondrial genes.

They pinpointed four, including one called CG11837, and undertook experiments to diminish their activities in fruit flies.

The findings revealed that, in contrast to the control group, the diminished activity of these specific genes resulted in conspicuous alterations to the mitochondrial structure, according to the study published this week in the journal Nature Aging.

Furthermore, the team discovered a significant positive correlation between the activity of CG11837 and the lifespan of the organism.

They knocked down the gene across a spectrum of six distinct species, including brown plant hoppers, fruit flies and mosquitoes, and the gene suppression led to a pronounced shortening of their lifespans, with the diminution spanning from 25 to 59 percent.

In contrast, the overexpression of the gene is shown to extend median lifespans in fruit flies, according to the study.

Also, in vitro studies using human cells have shown that the activation of the CG11837 gene boosts their capacity to combat aging, achieving a 30-percent enhancement.

The CG11837 activation may emerge as a novel strategy for extending human lifespan, and in the agricultural sector, this gene knockdown could potentially serve as a new way for pest control, said the researchers.

Source(s): Xinhua News Agency
Search Trends