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Biogerontology. 2004;5(2):81-8.

Effects of dietary restriction and metal supplementation on the accumulation of iron-laden glial inclusions in the aging rat hippocampus.

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Centre for Neurotranslational Research, Lady Davis Institute for Medical Research, Sir Mortimer B. Davis Jewish General Hospital, McGill University, Montreal, Que., Canada H3T 1E2.


The mechanisms responsible for the pathological deposition of iron and other redox-active metals in the aging and degenerating mammalian CNS remain poorly understood. We previously demonstrated that normal aging and pharmacological (oxidative) stressors promote the transformation of astroglial mitochondria to iron-laden, diaminobenzidine (DAB)-positive cytoplasmic inclusions in sub-cortical regions of the rat brain. In the current study, we demonstrate that (1) numbers of DAB-positive glial granules in the rat dorsal hippocampus, an area implicated in learning and memory, progressively increase between 3, 12 and 22 months of age; (2) dietary restriction (40%), a manipulation that attenuates many mammalian aging processes, has no effect on the age-related accumulation of these gliosomes in the rat hippocampus; and (3) the latter can be accelerated by dietary supplementation of iron and copper. Our data support the view that dietary exposure to iron and/or copper in adult life can impact the sequestration of redox-active metals in aging hippocampal astroglia.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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