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PLoS One. 2011;6(9):e24076. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0024076. Epub 2011 Sep 2.

The spatial association of gene expression evolves from synchrony to asynchrony and stochasticity with age.

Author information

1
Huashan Hospital, Fudan University, Shanghai, China. wtq_flying@hotmail.com

Abstract

For multicellular organisms, different tissues coordinate to integrate physiological functions, although this systematically and gradually declines in the aging process. Therefore, an association exists between tissue coordination and aging, and investigating the evolution of tissue coordination with age is of interest. In the past decade, both common and heterogeneous aging processes among tissues were extensively investigated. The results on spatial association of gene changes that determine lifespan appear complex and paradoxical. To reconcile observed commonality and heterogeneity of gene changes among tissues and to address evolution feature of tissue coordination with age, we introduced a new analytical strategy to systematically analyze genome-wide spatio-temporal gene expression profiles. We first applied the approach to natural aging process in three species (Rat, Mouse and Drosophila) and then to anti-aging process in Mouse. The results demonstrated that temporal gene expression alteration in different tissues experiences a progressive association evolution from spatial synchrony to asynchrony and stochasticity with age. This implies that tissue coordination gradually declines with age. Male mice showed earlier spatial asynchrony in gene expression than females, suggesting that male animals are more prone to aging than females. The confirmed anti-aging interventions (resveratrol and caloric restriction) enhanced tissue coordination, indicating their underlying anti-aging mechanism on multiple tissue levels. Further, functional analysis suggested asynchronous DNA/protein damage accumulation as well as asynchronous repair, modification and degradation of DNA/protein in tissues possibly contributes to asynchronous and stochastic changes of tissue microenvironment. This increased risk for a variety of age-related diseases such as neurodegeneration and cancer that eventually accelerate organismal aging and death. Our study suggests a novel molecular event occurring in aging process of multicellular species that may represent an intrinsic molecular mechanism of aging.

PMID:
21912663
PMCID:
PMC3166296
DOI:
10.1371/journal.pone.0024076
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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