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BMB Rep. 2008 Nov 30;41(11):751-6.

SIRT1: roles in aging and cancer.

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Department of Molecular Biology, Dankook University, Gyeonggi-do, Korea.


Aging and cancer both occur as a result of accumulated cellular damage, and both are related to the regulation of specific genes in the damage response. Recent research has unveiled connections between the mechanisms of aging and cancer, but how to prevent the development of cancer and increase longevity remain unknown. SIRT1 (the mammalian Sir2), which has NAD(+)-dependent class III histone deacetylase activity, may be a key gene linking the modulation of cancer and aging. SIRT1 has broad biological functions in growth regulation, stress response, tumorigenesis, endocrine signaling, and extended lifespan. Here, we focus on the current knowledge regarding the role of SIRT1 in aging and cancer, and discuss the implications of SIRT1 as a therapeutic target for the optimal balance between anti-aging and anti-cancer activities.

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