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Nat Neurosci. 2013 May;16(5):529-31. doi: 10.1038/nn.3368. Epub 2013 Apr 7.

Activation of transposable elements during aging and neuronal decline in Drosophila.

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  • 1Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory, Cold Spring Harbor, New York, USA.


We found that several transposable elements were highly active in Drosophila brain during normal aging. In addition, we found that mutations in Drosophila Argonaute 2 (Ago2) resulted in exacerbated transposon expression in the brain, progressive and age-dependent memory impairment, and shortened lifespan. These findings suggest that transposon activation may contribute to age-dependent loss of neuronal function.

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