Sumary of Fixing protein production errors lengthens lifespan:
- Reducing naturally occurring errors in protein synthesis (production) improves both health and lifespan, finds a new study in simple model organisms led by researchers at UCL and MRC London Institute of Medical Sciences.
- The novel findings, published in Cell Metabolism, are the first to demonstrate a direct link between fewer protein mistakes and longevity.
- “However, mistakes in proteins which affect organismal health are largely neglected, despite the fact that errors introduced during synthesis of new proteins are much more frequent than mutations made during DNA replication.
- “For this study we therefore focused on protein errors, and we questioned if fewer mistakes in proteins improve health.
- ” For the study, scientists investigated an evolutionary ‘hyper-accuracy’ mutation, known as RPS23 K60R, found in the ribosomes (cell’s protein producing factories) of hyperthermophilic Archaea, a single-celled organism that can live at extremely high temperatures.
- Using genome editing, scientists engineered a metazoan (meaning, of the animal kingdom) ribosome to carry the identical mutation (a single amino acid change) as the hyperthermophilic Archaea, and thereby replicated its effect on protein synthesis in simple model organisms, namely yeast, worms and fruit flies.
- The team observed that the organisms’ proteins had fewer errors and, as a result, the organisms became heat resistant and lived longer.