Research Papers: Gerotarget (Focus on Aging):

Polyunsaturated fatty acids ameliorate aging via redox-telomere-antioncogene axis

Jingnan Chen, Yan Wei, Xinyu Chen, Jingjing Jiao and Yu Zhang _

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Oncotarget. 2017; 8:7301-7314. https://doi.org/10.18632/oncotarget.14236

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Jingnan Chen1, Yan Wei1, Xinyu Chen1, Jingjing Jiao2 and Yu Zhang1

1 Department of Food Science and Nutrition, College of Biosystems Engineering and Food Science, Zhejiang University, Hangzhou, Zhejiang, China

2 Department of Nutrition, School of Public Health, Zhejiang University School of Medicine, Hangzhou, Zhejiang, China

Correspondence to:

Yu Zhang, email:

Jingjing Jiao, email:

Keywords: polyunsaturated fatty acids, anti-aging, redox, telomere protection, antioncogene, Gerotarget

Received: October 24, 2016 Accepted: December 20, 2016 Published: December 26, 2016


Polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA), a group of nourishing and health-promoting nutrients, ameliorate age-related chronic diseases. However, how PUFA especially n-3 PUFA exert anti-aging functions remains poorly understood. Here we link fish oil, docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) and arachidonic acid (AA) to the aging etiology via a redox-telomere-antioncogene axis based on D-galactose-induced aging mice. Both fish oil and PUFA enhanced hepatic superoxide dismutase (SOD) and catalase activities and cardiac SOD activities within the range of 18%-46%, 26%-65% and 19%-58%, respectively, whereas reduced cerebral monoamine oxidase activity, plasma F2-isoprostane level and cerebral lipid peroxidation level by 56%-90%, 20%-79% and 16%-54%, respectively. Thus, PUFA improve the in vivo redox and oxidative stress induced aging process, which however does not exhibit a dose-dependent manner. Notably, both PUFA and fish oil effectively inactivated testicular telomerase and inhibited c-Myc-mediated telomerase reverse transcriptase expression, whereas n-3 PUFA rather than n-6 PUFA protected liver and testes against telomere shortening within the range of 13%-25% and 25%-27%, respectively. Therefore, n-3 PUFA may be better at inhibiting the DNA damage induced aging process. Surprisingly, only DHA significantly suppressed cellular senescence pathway evidenced by testicular antioncogene p16 and p53 expression. This work provides evident support for the crosstalk between PUFA especially n-3 PUFA and the aging process via maintaining the in vivo redox homeostasis, rescuing age-related telomere attrition and down-regulating the antioncogene expression.

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