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Fed Proc. 1979 Apr;38(5):1862-7.

In vitro studies of age-associated diseases.


We have carried out studies on cultured human fibroblasts in an attempt to trace the origins of age-dependent disorders to the cellular and molecular levels. Three interrelated areas are discussed. First, skin donors with diabetes mellitus (a disease complex that features inappropriate hyperglycemia) produce cultured fibroblasts with a moderate reduction in growth capacity, while two inherited disorders of inappropriate hyperglycemia and premature aging, progeria and Werner syndrome, yield fibroblast cultures with more severely impaired growth capacity. Second, there is a decreased response of progeria level and donor age; evidence is presented that this defective hormone responsiveness in aging cells may reside at the hormone receptor on the surface membrane, the cyclic AMP system, the intracellular enzymatic machinery, or all of these sites. Third, tissue factor, a procoagulant that activates the extrinsic clotting mechanism, is more abundant in cells from the premature aging syndromes of progeria and Werner syndrome. Fibroblast aging in vitro may help to explain various concomitants of normal aging and diabetes mellitus including cell dropout, impairment of hormone responsiveness, and increased atherothrombosis.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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