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Curr Neuropharmacol. 2010 Sep;8(3):182-93. doi: 10.2174/157015910792246245.

The role of mitochondria in brain aging and the effects of melatonin.

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Centro de Investigación Biomédica, Instituto de Biotecnología, Universidad de Granada, Granada, Spain.


Melatonin is an endogenous indoleamine present in different tissues, cellular compartments and organelles including mitochondria. When melatonin is administered orally, it is readily available to the brain where it counteracts different processes that occur during aging and age-related neurodegenerative disorders. These aging processes include oxidative stress and oxidative damage, chronic and acute inflammation, mitochondrial dysfunction and loss of neural regeneration. This review summarizes age related changes in the brain and the importance of oxidative/nitrosative stress and mitochondrial dysfunction in brain aging. The data and mechanisms of action of melatonin in relation to aging of the brain are reviewed as well.


Melatonin; aging; brain; mitochondria; neural stem cells.; neurodegenerative diseases; oxidative stress

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