“Many people falsely believe that the benefits of exercise will be found in a pill,” said Mark Tarnopolsky, principal investigator of the study and a professor of pediatrics and medicine of the Michael G. DeGroote School of Medicine. “We have clearly shown that there is no substitute for the “real thing” of exercise when it comes to protection from aging.”
The study, published today in the prestigious science journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS), found that premature aging in nearly every organ in the body was completely prevented in mice that ran on a treadmill three times a week for five months.
These mice were genetically engineered to age faster due to a defect in a gene for polymerase gamma (POLG1) that alters the repair system of their mitochondria – the cellular powerhouses responsible for generating energy for nearly every cell in the body.
Mitochondria are unique in that they have their own DNA. It has been thought that lifelong accumulation of mitochondrial DNA mutations lead to energy crisis that result in a progressive decline in tissue and organ function, ultimately resulting in aging. But the study on genetically-disadvantaged mice found those who had endurance exercise training three times a week looked as young as healthy mice while their sedentary siblings were balding, graying, physically inactive, socially isolated and less fertile.
“Others have tried to treat these animals with “exercise pill” drugs and have even tried to reduce their caloric intake, a strategy felt to be the most effective for slowing aging, and these were met with limited success,” said Tarnopolsky.
Adeel Safdar, lead author and a senior PhD student working with Tarnopolsky said: “I believe that we have very compelling evidence that clearly show that endurance exercise is a lifestyle approach that improves whole body mitochondrial function which is critical for reducing morbidity and mortality. Exercise truly is the fountain of youth.”
Co-author Jacqueline Bourgeois said: “The recipe for healthy aging is very simple, and that’s exercise. The problem is that it is most people find it a difficult recipe to follow.” She is an associate professor of pathology and molecular medicine at McMaster.
Tarnopolsky said he hopes that this research will motive children and adults to adopt a healthier lifestyle and for government agencies to promote health and sport.
Funders of the study included the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR). As well, Adeel Safdar holds a CIHR – Institute of Aging doctoral research scholarship.
McMaster University, one of four Canadian universities listed among the Top 100 universities in the world, is renowned for its innovation in both learning and discovery. It has a student population of 23,000, and more than 140,000 alumni in 128 countries.
Note to editors: Videos and photos are available at http://fhs.mcmaster.ca/media/tarnopolsky/media_20110218.html
For more information please contact:Mark Tarnopolsky
Veronica McGuire | Newswise Science News
WAKE-UP provides new treatment option for stroke patients | International study led by UKE
17.05.2018 | Universitätsklinikum Hamburg-Eppendorf
First form of therapy for childhood dementia CLN2 developed
25.04.2018 | Universitätsklinikum Hamburg-Eppendorf
At the LASYS 2018, from June 5th to 7th, the Laser Zentrum Hannover e.V. (LZH) will be showcasing processes for the laser material processing of tomorrow in hall 4 at stand 4E75. With blown bomb shells the LZH will present first results of a research project on civil security.
At this year's LASYS, the LZH will exhibit light-based processes such as cutting, welding, ablation and structuring as well as additive manufacturing for...
There are videos on the internet that can make one marvel at technology. For example, a smartphone is casually bent around the arm or a thin-film display is rolled in all directions and with almost every diameter. From the user's point of view, this looks fantastic. From a professional point of view, however, the question arises: Is that already possible?
At Display Week 2018, scientists from the Fraunhofer Institute for Applied Polymer Research IAP will be demonstrating today’s technological possibilities and...
So-called quantum many-body scars allow quantum systems to stay out of equilibrium much longer, explaining experiment | Study published in Nature Physics
Recently, researchers from Harvard and MIT succeeded in trapping a record 53 atoms and individually controlling their quantum state, realizing what is called a...
The historic first detection of gravitational waves from colliding black holes far outside our galaxy opened a new window to understanding the universe. A...
A team led by Austrian experimental physicist Rainer Blatt has succeeded in characterizing the quantum entanglement of two spatially separated atoms by observing their light emission. This fundamental demonstration could lead to the development of highly sensitive optical gradiometers for the precise measurement of the gravitational field or the earth's magnetic field.
The age of quantum technology has long been heralded. Decades of research into the quantum world have led to the development of methods that make it possible...
02.05.2018 | Event News
13.04.2018 | Event News
12.04.2018 | Event News
23.05.2018 | Life Sciences
23.05.2018 | Life Sciences
23.05.2018 | Physics and Astronomy