If new research is correct resveratrol, a compound found in red wine could play a role in preventing cell aging.
Scientists studying rodents found that a particular gene called SIRT1 when turned off had no effect on mitrochondrial function when resveratrol was applied, while tests of muscle tissue in mice with normal SIRTi genes saw a boost to mitochondrial function.
Mitochondria provides the energy that cells need to properly operation and a decrease in mitochondrial has been linked to various diseases including Alzheimer’s and diabetes. Decreasing mitochondrial has often been directly linked to aging.
While the findings are hoping the study’s researchers point out that mice were given the equivalent of 100 glasses of red wine per day based on resveratrol consumption.
If the study proves successful scientists could develop synthetic resveratrol compound that activates SIRT1 and could potentially be used as a breakthrough medication. Scientists are quick to point out that animal studies frequently fail to produce similar results in humans which could lead to a dead end product down the road.
A researcher who examined the study tells Health Day:
“A mouse model is not a human being, especially when you are genetically manipulating this animal model, you want to be very careful. This field has been extremely controversial. We should be very careful about claiming the importance of resveratrol for medical purposes. We have to wait and see, but this study is a big step forward.”
The study is published in the May 1 issue of Cell Metabolism.
[Study via Health Day]