|The median age of the world population is increasing rapidly, meaning that the number of senior citizens is on the rise. In the United States during the 20th century, the number of people under 65 tripled but those over 65 increased by a factor of 11. The elderly suffer from a myriad of age-related pathologies and improving their quality of life requires improving our understanding of the molecular basis of aging. |
Recent studies in short-lived animals suggest that metabolism plays a pivotal role in senescence. Metabolite studies in humans, however, have been greatly limited.
Here, we used untargeted metabolomics to reveal new pathways that may be targeted to treat age-related pathologies. We investigated human muscle tissue in young and old individuals given its central role in governing metabolism. Additionally, we analyzed matched plasma samples from the same group of young and old individuals. We identified a significant number of down regulated metabolites in both the muscle and plasma elderly samples.
These metabolites provide a previously unrecognized metabolic signature for aging.