Update on Resveratrol Research

Researchers continue to explore resveratrol as a calorie restriction mimetic. There's a way to go yet before we see a weight of science to match plain old calorie restriction, but it looks more promising as evidence accumulates: "scientists included small amounts of resveratrol in the diets of middle-aged mice and found that the compound has a widespread influence on the genetic causes of aging. ... Caloric restriction is highly effective in extending life in many species. If you provide species with less food, the regulated cellular stress response of this healthy habit actually makes them live longer. In this study, the effects of low doses of resveratrol (on genes) were comparable to caloric restriction, the hallmark for life extension. ... Previous research has shown that high doses of resveratrol extend life in invertebrates and prevent early death in mice given a high-fat diet. The new study extends those findings, showing that resveratrol in low doses, beginning in middle age, can elicit many of the same benefits as a reduced-calorie diet. ... Resveratrol is active in much lower doses than previously thought. ... In the heart [there] are at least 1,029 genes whose functions change with age. In animals on restricted diets, 90 percent of those heart genes experienced alterations in gene expression, while low doses of resveratrol thwarted age-related change in 92 percent."

Link: http://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2008-06/uof-sir060408.php

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