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Grantees in the News: Hefland, Wood, and Schwer’s research on Sirt4 Gene and Fruit Flies’ Lifespan and Metabolism in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences

Feb 7
2018

Grantees in the News: Hefland, Wood, and Schwer’s research on Sirt4 Gene and Fruit Flies’ Lifespan and Metabolism in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences View MoreBACK

On January 29th 2018, the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences journal published research co-authored by 2014 Glenn/AFAR Breakthroughs in Gerontology (BIG) Award grantee Stephen Helfand, M.D.; 2008 Ellison Medical Foundation/AFAR Senior Postdoctoral Fellow Bjoern Schwer, M.D., Ph.D.; and 2010 Biology of Aging and 2010 Ellison Medical Foundation/AFAR Postdoctoral Fellow Jason Wood, Ph.D.;

Their research article “Sirt4 is a mitochondrial regulator of metabolism and lifespan in Drosophilia melanogaster” presents findings on the role of the Sirt4 gene in regulating lifespan and metabolism in fruit flies.

In a related ScienceNewsline article, Dr. Wood states: "We show that Sirt4 is responsible for regulating both lifespan and metabolism in an organism, and specifically that it coordinates the metabolic response to fasting.  We also demonstrate that overexpressing the gene for Sirt4 can extend lifespan of the fly."

Dr. Hefland explains the possible implication of the study: "We think Sirt4 is an attractive target to help improve diseases of metabolism and possibly extend healthy life.  In living flies, we saw that it worked, but we're not sure how."

The original journal article is available by subscription-only here.

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Stephen Helfand, M.D., is an Associate Director for Research and Professor of Biology, Department of Molecular Biology, Cell Biology and Biochemistry, at Brown University.

Jason Wood, Ph.D., is an Investigator in Molecular Biology, Cell Biology, and Biochemistry, at Brown University.

Bjoern Schwer, M.D., Ph.D., is an Assistant Professor at University of California, San Francisco in the Neurological Surgery department.





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