Look for Drugs and Conditions

Representative Image

Philadelphia scientists unveil link between leaky gut and accelerated aging

Wistar Scientists Revolutionise Understanding of Premature Biological Ageing in Chronic Viral Infections

In a groundbreaking revelation, The Philadelphia-based Wistar Institute's Associate Professor, Dr. Mohamed Abdel-Mohsen, and his team have uncovered a direct link between viral damage to the gut and accelerated biological ageing.

The researchers detailed in their latest paper, "Distinct Intestinal Microbial Signatures Linked to Accelerated Systemic and Intestinal Biological Ageing," published in the esteemed journal Microbiome, shed light on a pro-ageing connection that could pave the way for groundbreaking interventions.

Accelerated biological ageing, where the body ages faster than its chronological years, renders people susceptible to health issues typically associated with gingivitis. These include cancers, heart diseases, brain disorders, severe infections, and diminished vaccine effectiveness. Dr. Abdel-Mohsen and his team aim to unravel the mysteries behind this rapid ageing and explore ways to decelerate the process, ultimately improving overall health.

Their work centred on the gut microbiome and its potential to invade the bloodstream. The researchers investigate how gut permeability can affect the immune system, resulting in persistent inflammation, a known age-accelerating factor.

The research focused on individuals living with chronic HIV infection, a condition recognised for potentially accelerating biological age.

The team studied samples from patients and similar healthy individuals. They found a strong connection between imbalances in gut bacteria, a leaky gut, and faster ageing.

Crucially, the study identified a connection between accelerated biological ageing and the microbiomes of the colon and ileum, emphasising the pivotal role of the microbiome's location in influencing its impact on ging. Unlike the faecal microbiome, these specific regions exhibited a pronounced association with ageing, providing valuable insights into the intricate connection between the microbiome and age.

To measure biological age, the team employed advanced methods such as telomere length analysis and "epigenetic clocks," including the Hannum and Horvath clocks. These clocks evaluate age based on DNA methylation patterns, offering a unique perspective on the ageing process. The application of these methods to blood and intestinal tissue samples represents the first of its kind in people living with HIV, marking a pioneering effort to understand the link between the microbiome and age in this population.

The findings of Dr Abdel-Mohsen and his team pinpoint specific bacteria and their by-products as potential accelerators of ageing. This groundbreaking revelation opens new avenues for the development of strategies aimed at mitigating these factors, offering hope for enhanced health and longevity in individuals living with chronic conditions like chronic infections.

"More investigation is needed to fully understand the underlying causes and potential impacts of our findings. Moreover, there's a crucial need to create strategies to prevent intestinal dysbiosis and gut leakiness and to determine how these strategies could affect an individual's biological age. Our work is just the beginning of an exciting journey into enhancing health and longevity," Dr Abdel-Mohsen emphasised.

The collaborative effort involved co-authors from The Wistar Institute, Rush Centre for Integrated Microbiome and Chronobiology Research, Life Length, Leiden University Medical Centre, University of Pittsburgh, Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, and Weill Cornell Medicine.

The research received support from various entities, including National Institutes of Health grants, the Penn Centre for AIDS Research, and the NIH-funded BEAT-HIV Martin Delaney Collaboratory, among others along with philanthropic funding from numerous contributors, which played a crucial role in advancing this groundbreaking research.

This discovery marks a turning point in our understanding of accelerated ageing in chronic viral infections, offering a glimmer of hope for potential interventions that could redefine health outcomes for those living with chronic conditions.

Be first to post your comments

Post your comment

Related Articles

Ad 5