Author(s): Dhahbi JM, Mote PL, Fahy GM, Spindler SR
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Abstract To facilitate the development of assays for the discovery of pharmaceuticals capable of mimicking the effects of caloric restriction (CR) on life- and healthspan (CR mimetics), we evaluated the effectiveness of glucoregulatory and putative cancer chemopreventatives in reproducing the hepatic gene expression profile produced by long-term CR (LTCR), using Affymetrix microarrays. We have shown that CR initiated late in life begins to extend lifespan, reduce cancer as a cause of death, and reproduce approximately three-quarters of the genomic effects of LTCR in 8 wk (CR8). Eight weeks of metformin treatment was superior to CR8 at reproducing LTCR-like gene expression changes, maintaining a superior number of such changes over a broad range of statistical stringencies, and producing more Gene Ontology terms overlapping those produced by LTCR. Consistent with these results, metformin has been shown to reduce cancer incidence in mice and humans. Phenformin, a chemical cousin of metformin, extends lifespan and reduces tumor incidence in mice. Taken together, these results indicate that gene expression biomarkers can be used to identify promising candidate CR mimetics.
This article was published in Physiol Genomics
and referenced in Journal of Clinical & Experimental Pathology