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Transplantation of ACE2- Mesenchymal Stem Cells Improves the Outcome of Patients with COVID-19 Pneumonia
Zikuan Leng, Rongjia Zhu, Wei Hou, Yingmei Feng, Yanlei Yang, Qin Han, Guangliang Shan, Fanyan Meng, Dongshu Du, Shihua Wang, Junfen Fan, Wenjing Wang, Luchan Deng, Hongbo Shi, Hongjun Li, Zhongjie Hu, Fengchun Zhang, Jinming Gao, Hongjian Liu, Xiaoxia Li, Yangyang Zhao, Kan Yin, Xijing He, Zhengchao Gao, Yibin Wang, Bo Yang, Ronghua Jin, Ilia Stambler, Lee Wei Lim, Huanxing Su, Alexey Moskalev, Antonio Cano, Sasanka Chakrabarti, Kyung-Jin Min, Georgina Ellison-Hughes, Calogero Caruso, Kunlin Jin, Robert Chunhua Zhao
Aging and disease    2020, 11 (2): 216-228.   DOI: 10.14336/AD.2020.0228
Accepted: 29 February 2020

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A coronavirus (HCoV-19) has caused the novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak in Wuhan, China. Preventing and reversing the cytokine storm may be the key to save the patients with severe COVID-19 pneumonia. Mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) have been shown to possess a comprehensive powerful immunomodulatory function. This study aims to investigate whether MSC transplantation improves the outcome of 7 enrolled patients with COVID-19 pneumonia in Beijing YouAn Hospital, China, from Jan 23, 2020 to Feb 16, 2020. The clinical outcomes, as well as changes of inflammatory and immune function levels and adverse effects of 7 enrolled patients were assessed for 14 days after MSC injection. MSCs could cure or significantly improve the functional outcomes of seven patients without observed adverse effects. The pulmonary function and symptoms of these seven patients were significantly improved in 2 days after MSC transplantation. Among them, two common and one severe patient were recovered and discharged in 10 days after treatment. After treatment, the peripheral lymphocytes were increased, the C-reactive protein decreased, and the overactivated cytokine-secreting immune cells CXCR3+CD4+ T cells, CXCR3+CD8+ T cells, and CXCR3+ NK cells disappeared in 3-6 days. In addition, a group of CD14+CD11c+CD11bmid regulatory DC cell population dramatically increased. Meanwhile, the level of TNF-α was significantly decreased, while IL-10 increased in MSC treatment group compared to the placebo control group. Furthermore, the gene expression profile showed MSCs were ACE2- and TMPRSS2- which indicated MSCs are free from COVID-19 infection. Thus, the intravenous transplantation of MSCs was safe and effective for treatment in patients with COVID-19 pneumonia, especially for the patients in critically severe condition.

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Mesenchymal Stem Cell Infusion Shows Promise for Combating Coronavirus (COVID-19)- Induced Pneumonia
Ashok K Shetty
Aging and disease    2020, 11 (2): 462-464.   DOI: 10.14336/AD.2020.0301
Accepted: 01 March 2020

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A new study published by the journal Aging & Disease reported that intravenous administration of clinical-grade human mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) into patients with coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) resulted in improved functional outcomes (Leng et al., Aging Dis, 11:216-228, 2020). This study demonstrated that intravenous infusion of MSCs is a safe and effective approach for treating patients with COVID-19 pneumonia, including elderly patients displaying severe pneumonia. COVID-19 is a severe acute respiratory illness caused by a new coronavirus named severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2). Currently, treating COVID-19 patients, particularly those afflicted with severe pneumonia, is challenging as no specific drugs or vaccines against SARS-CoV-2 are available. Therefore, MSC therapy inhibiting the overactivation of the immune system and promoting endogenous repair by improving the lung microenvironment after the SARS-CoV-2 infection found in this study is striking. Additional studies in a larger cohort of patients are needed to validate this therapeutic intervention further, however.

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Geroprotectors: A Unified Concept and Screening Approaches
Moskalev Alexey, Chernyagina Elizaveta, Kudryavtseva Anna, Shaposhnikov Mikhail
Aging and disease    2017, 8 (3): 354-363.   DOI: 10.14336/AD.2016.1022
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Although the geroprotectors discovery is a new biomedicine trend and more than 200 compounds can slow aging and increase the lifespan of the model organism, there are still no geroprotectors on the market. The reasons may be partly related to the lack of a unified concept of geroprotector, accepted by the scientific community. Such concept as a system of criteria for geroprotector identification and classification can form a basis for an analytical model of anti-aging drugs, help to consolidate the efforts of various research initiatives in this area and compare their results. Here, we review the existing classification and characteristics of geroprotectors based on their effect on the survival of a group of individuals or pharmaceutics classes, according to the proposed mechanism of their geroprotective action or theories of aging. After discussing advantages and disadvantages of these approaches, we offer a new concept based on the maintenance of homeostatic capacity because aging can be considered as exponential shrinkage of homeostatic capacity leading to the onset of age-related diseases and death. Besides, we review the most promising current screening approaches to finding new geroprotectors. Establishing the classification of existing geroprotectors based on physiology and current understanding of the nature of aging is essential for putting the existing knowledge into a single system. This system could be useful to formulate standards for finding and creating new geroprotectors. Standardization, in turn, would allow easier comparison and combination of experimental data obtained by different research groups.

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The Interstitial System of the Brain in Health and Disease
Ashok K. Shetty, Gabriele Zanirati
Aging and disease    2020, 11 (1): 200-211.   DOI: 10.14336/AD.2020.0103
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The brain interstitial fluid (ISF) and the cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) cushion and support the brain cells. The ISF occupies the brain interstitial system (ISS), whereas the CSF fills the brain ventricles and the subarachnoid space. The brain ISS is an asymmetrical, tortuous, and exceptionally confined space between neural cells and the brain microvasculature. Recently, with a newly developed in vivo measuring technique, a series of discoveries have been made in the brain ISS and the drainage of ISF. The goal of this review is to confer recent advances in our understanding of the brain ISS, including its structure, function, and the various processes mediating or disrupting ISF drainage in physiological and pathological conditions. The brain ISF in the deep brain regions has recently been demonstrated to drain in a compartmentalized ISS instead of a highly connected system, together with the drainage of ISF into the cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) at the surface of the cerebral cortex and the transportation from CSF into cervical lymph nodes. Besides, accumulation of tau in the brain ISS in conditions such as Alzheimer’s disease and its link to the sleep-wake cycle and sleep deprivation, clearance of ISF in a deep sleep via increased CSF flow, novel approaches to remove beta-amyloid from the brain ISS, and obstruction to the ISF drainage in neurological conditions are deliberated. Moreover, the role of ISS in the passage of extracellular vesicles (EVs) released from neural cells and the rapid targeting of therapeutic EVs into neural cells in the entire brain following an intranasal administration, and the promise and limitations of ISS based drug delivery approaches are discussed

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Combined Antioxidant, Anti-inflammaging and Mesenchymal Stem Cell Treatment: A Possible Therapeutic Direction in Elderly Patients with Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease
Shijin Xia, Changxi Zhou, Bill Kalionis, Xiaoping Shuang, Haiyan Ge, Wen Gao
Aging and disease    2020, 11 (1): 129-140.   DOI: 10.14336/AD.2019.0508
Accepted: 11 May 2019

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Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) is a worldwide health problem associated with high morbidity and mortality, especially in elderly patients. Aging functions include mitochondrial dysfunction, cell-to-cell information exchange, protein homeostasis and extracellular matrix dysregulation, which are closely related to chronic inflammatory response and oxidation-antioxidant imbalance in the pathogenesis of COPD. COPD displays distinct inflammaging features, including increased cellular senescence and oxidative stress, stem cell exhaustion, alterations in the extracellular matrix, reduced levels of endogenous anti-inflammaging molecules, and reduced autophagy. Given that COPD and inflammaging share similar general features, it is very important to identify the specific mechanisms of inflammaging, which involve oxidative stress, inflammation and lung mesenchymal stem cell function in the development of COPD, especially in elderly COPD patients. In this review, we highlight the studies relevant to COPD progression, and focus on mechanisms associated with inflammaging.

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Emerging Anti-Aging Strategies - Scientific Basis and Efficacy
Ashok K. Shetty, Maheedhar Kodali, Raghavendra Upadhya, Leelavathi N. Madhu
Aging and disease    2018, 9 (6): 1165-1184.   DOI: 10.14336/AD.2018.1026
Accepted: 21 November 2018

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The prevalence of age-related diseases is in an upward trend due to increased life expectancy in humans. Age-related conditions are among the leading causes of morbidity and death worldwide currently. Therefore, there is an urgent need to find apt interventions that slow down aging and reduce or postpone the incidence of debilitating age-related diseases. This review discusses the efficacy of emerging anti-aging approaches for maintaining better health in old age. There are many anti-aging strategies in development, which include procedures such as augmentation of autophagy, elimination of senescent cells, transfusion of plasma from young blood, intermittent fasting, enhancement of adult neurogenesis, physical exercise, antioxidant intake, and stem cell therapy. Multiple pre-clinical studies suggest that administration of autophagy enhancers, senolytic drugs, plasma from young blood, drugs that enhance neurogenesis and BDNF are promising approaches to sustain normal health during aging and also to postpone age-related neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s disease. Stem cell therapy has also shown promise for improving regeneration and function of the aged or Alzheimer’s disease brain. Several of these approaches are awaiting critical appraisal in clinical trials to determine their long-term efficacy and possible adverse effects. On the other hand, procedures such as intermittent fasting, physical exercise, intake of antioxidants such as resveratrol and curcumin have shown considerable promise for improving function in aging, some of which are ready for large-scale clinical trials, as they are non-invasive, and seem to have minimal side effects. In summary, several approaches are at the forefront of becoming mainstream therapies for combating aging and postponing age-related diseases in the coming years.

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Angelica Sinensis Polysaccharide Suppresses Epithelial-Mesenchymal Transition and Pulmonary Fibrosis via a DANCR/AUF-1/FOXO3 Regulatory Axis
Weibin Qian, Xinrui Cai, Qiuhai Qian, Dongli Wang, Lei Zhang
Aging and disease    2020, 11 (1): 17-30.   DOI: 10.14336/AD.2019.0512
Accepted: 13 May 2019

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Idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF) is characterized by the accumulation of lung fibroblasts and extracellular matrix deposition. Angelica sinensis polysaccharide (ASP), the major bioactive component that can extracted from roots of angelica, plays functional roles in immunomodulation, anti-tumor activity, and hematopoiesis. Emerging evidence has suggested that long noncoding RNAs (lncRNAs) play important roles in pathophysiological processes in various diseases. However, the roles of lncRNAs and ASP in IPF remain poorly understood. In the present study, we investigated the effects of ASP in IPF, as well as their functional interactions with lncRNA DANCR (differentiation antagonizing non-protein coding RNA). IPF models were established by treating Sprague-Dawley rats with BLM and treating alveolar type Ⅱ epithelial (RLE-6TN) cells with TGF-β1. Our results showed that ASP treatment suppressed pulmonary fibrosis in rats and fibrogenesis in RLE-6TN cells. The lncRNA DANCR is downregulated after ASP treatment in both rat lung tissues and RLE-6TN cells, and DANCR overexpression dramatically reversed the suppressive effects of ASP in IPF. Mechanistically, DANCR directly binds with AUF1 (AU-binding factor 1), thereby upregulating FOXO3 mRNA and protein levels. Moreover, overexpression of AUF1 or FOXO3 reversed the functional effects induced by ASP treatment. In conclusion, our findings showed that DANCR mediates ASP-induced suppression of IPF via upregulation of FOXO3 protein levels in an AUF1-dependent manner. Therefore, DANCR could serve as a promising therapeutic target in IPF treatment with ASP.

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Physical Activity and Alzheimer’s Disease: A Narrative Review
Piotr Gronek, Stefan Balko, Joanna Gronek, Adam Zajac, Adam Maszczyk, Roman Celka, Agnieszka Doberska, Wojciech Czarny, Robert Podstawski, Cain C. T Clark, Fang Yu
Aging and disease    2019, 10 (6): 1282-1292.   DOI: 10.14336/AD.2019.0226
Accepted: 12 March 2019

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Although age is a dominant risk factor for Alzheimer’s disease (AD), epidemiological studies have shown that physical activity may significantly decrease age-related risks for AD, and indeed mitigate the impact in existing diagnosis. The aim of this study was to perform a narrative review on the preventative, and mitigating, effects of physical activity on AD onset, including genetic factors, mechanism of action and physical activity typology. In this article, we conducted a narrative review of the influence physical activity and exercise have on AD, utilising key terms related to AD, physical activity, mechanism and prevention, searching the online databases; Web of Science, PubMed and Google Scholar, and, subsequently, discuss possible mechanisms of this action. On the basis of this review, it is evident that physical activity and exercise may be incorporated in AD, notwithstanding, a greater number of high-quality randomised controlled trials are needed, moreover, physical activity typology must be acutely considered, primarily due to a dearth of research on the efficacy of physical activity types other than aerobic.

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Overweight in the Elderly Induces a Switch in Energy Metabolism that Undermines Muscle Integrity
Yaiza Potes, Zulema Pérez-Martinez, Juan C. Bermejo-Millo, Adrian Rubio-Gonzalez, María Fernandez-Fernández, Manuel Bermudez, Jose M. Arche, Juan J. Solano, Jose A. Boga, Mamen Oliván, Beatriz Caballero, Ignacio Vega-Naredo, Ana Coto-Montes
Aging and disease    2019, 10 (2): 217-230.   DOI: 10.14336/AD.2018.0430
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Aging is characterized by a progressive loss of skeletal muscle mass and function (sarcopenia). Obesity exacerbates age-related decline and lead to frailty. Skeletal muscle fat infiltration increases with aging and seems to be crucial for the progression of sarcopenia. Additionally, skeletal muscle plasticity modulates metabolic adaptation to different pathophysiological situations. Thus, cellular bioenergetics and mitochondrial profile were studied in the skeletal muscle of overweight aged people without reaching obesity to prevent this extreme situation. Overweight aged muscle lacked ATP production, as indicated by defects in the phosphagen system, glycolysis and especially mostly by oxidative phosphorylation metabolic pathway. Overweight subjects exhibited an inhibition of mitophagy that was linked to an increase in mitochondrial biogenesis that underlies the accumulation of dysfunctional mitochondria and encourages the onset of sarcopenia. As a strategy to maintain cellular homeostasis, overweight subjects experienced a metabolic switch from oxidative to lactic acid fermentation metabolism, which allows continued ATP production under mitochondrial dysfunction, but without reaching physiological aged basal levels. This ATP depletion induced early signs of impaired contractile function and a decline in skeletal muscle structural integrity, evidenced by lower levels of filamin C. Our findings reveal the main effector pathways at an early stage of obesity and highlight the importance of mitochondrial metabolism in overweight and obese individuals. Exploiting mitochondrial profiles for therapeutic purposes in humans is an ambitious strategy for treating muscle impairment diseases.

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Interplay between Exosomes and Autophagy in Cardiovascular Diseases: Novel Promising Target for Diagnostic and Therapeutic Application
Jinfan Tian, Sharif Popal Mohammad, Yingke Zhao, Yanfei Liu, Keji Chen, Yue Liu
Aging and disease    2019, 10 (6): 1302-1310.   DOI: 10.14336/AD.2018.1020
Accepted: 20 November 2018

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Exosome, is identified as a nature nanocarrier and intercellular messenger that regulates cell to cell communication. Autophagy is critical in maintenance of protein homeostasis by degradation of damaged proteins and organelles. Autophagy and exosomes take pivotal roles in cellular homeostasis and cardiovascular disease. Currently, the coordinated mechanisms for exosomes and autophagy in the maintenance of cellular fitness are now garnering much attention. In the present review, we discussed the interplay of exosomes and autophagy in the context of physiology and pathology of the heart, which might provide novel insights for diagnostic and therapeutic application of cardiovascular diseases.

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Roles and Functions of Exosomal Non-coding RNAs in Vascular Aging
Yu-Qing Ni, Xiao Lin, Jun-Kun Zhan, You-Shuo Liu
Aging and disease    2020, 11 (1): 164-178.   DOI: 10.14336/AD.2019.0402
Accepted: 08 April 2019

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Aging is a progressive loss of physiological integrity and functionality process which increases susceptibility and mortality to diseases. Vascular aging is a specific type of organic aging. The structure and function changes of endothelial cells (ECs) and vascular smooth muscle cells (VSMCs) are the main cause of vascular aging, which could influence the threshold, process, and severity of vascular related diseases. Accumulating evidences demonstrate that exosomes serve as novel intercellular information communicator between cell to cell by delivering variety biologically active cargos, especially exosomal non-coding RNAs (ncRNAs), which are associated with most of aging-related biological and functional disorders. In this review, we will summerize the emerging roles and mechanisms of exosomal ncRNAs in vascular aging and vascular aging related diseases, focusing on the role of exosomal miRNAs and lncRNAs in regulating the functions of ECs and VSMCs. Moreover, the relationship between the ECs and VSMCs linked by exosomes, the potential diagnostic and therapeutic application of exosomes in vascular aging and the clinical evaluation and treatment of vascular aging and vascular aging related diseases will also be discussed.

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The Clinical Efficacy and Safety of Stem Cell Therapy for Diabetes Mellitus: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis
Yazhen Zhang, Wenyi Chen, Bing Feng, Hongcui Cao
Aging and disease    2020, 11 (1): 141-153.   DOI: 10.14336/AD.2019.0421
Accepted: 10 May 2019

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Diabetes mellitus (DM) is a chronic metabolic disease with high morbidity and mortality. Recently, stem cell-based therapy for DM has shown considerable promise. Here, we undertook a systematic review and meta-analysis of published clinical studies to evaluate the efficacy and safety of stem cell therapy for both type 1 DM (T1DM) and type 2 DM (T2DM). The PubMed, Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials, EMBASE, and ClinicalTrials.gov databases were searched up to November 2018. We employed a fixed-effect model using 95% confidence intervals (CIs) when no statistically significant heterogeneity existed. Otherwise, a random-effects statistical model was used. Twenty-one studies met our inclusion criteria: ten T1DM studies including 226 patients and eleven T2DM studies including 386 patients. Stem cell therapy improved C-peptide levels (mean difference (MD), 0.41; 95% CI, 0.06 to 0.76) and glycosylated hemoglobin (HbA1c; MD, -3.46; 95% CI, -6.01 to -0.91) for T1DM patients. For T2DM patients, stem cell therapy improved C-peptide levels (MD, 0.33; 95% CI, 0.07 to 0.59), HbA1c (MD, -0.87; 95% CI, -1.37 to -0.37) and insulin requirements (MD, -35.76; 95% CI, -40.47 to -31.04). However, there was no significant change in fasting plasma glucose levels (MD, -0.52; 95% CI, -1.38 to 0.34). Subgroup analyses showed significant HbA1c and C-peptide improvements in patients with T1DM treated with bone marrow hematopoietic stem cells (BM-HSCs), while there was no significant change in the mesenchymal stem cell (MSC) group. In T2DM, HbA1c and insulin requirements decreased significantly after MSC transplantation, and insulin requirements and C-peptide levels were significantly improved after bone marrow mononuclear cell (BM-MNC) treatment. Stem cell therapy is a relatively safe and effective method for selected individuals with DM. The data showed that BM-HSCs are superior to MSCs in the treatment of T1DM. In T2DM, MSC and BM-MNC transplantation showed favorable therapeutic effects.

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Aged Mice are More Resistant to Influenza Virus Infection due to Reduced Inflammation and Lung Pathology
Lu Jiao, Duan Xuefeng, Zhao Wenming, Wang Jing, Wang Haoyu, Zhou Kai, Fang Min
Aging and disease    2018, 9 (3): 358-373.   DOI: 10.14336/AD.2017.0701
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Immune responses are a double-edged sword. Effective and appropriate immune responses capable of controlling viral infection while also largely preserving tissue integrity, are critical for host survival. Too strong immune responses might result in immune pathology, while too weak immune responses might cause viral persistence. Physiologic ageing is accompanied with a decline in the normal functioning of the immune system, which is termed as "immunosenescence". We show that aged mice (16-19 months old) are more resistant to influenza A virus (IAV) infection than the young mice. Strong immune responses in the young mice after IAV infection result in faster clearance of virus, but also cause severe lung injury and higher mortality rate. While in the aged mice, the delayed and milder immune responses contribute to reduced pulmonary damage, and are still capable to clear the infection even with a slower kinetics, displaying a more resistant phenotype during IAV infection. Hence, our work demonstrates that moderate immune responses as a decline with ageing in the aged mice balance the immune pathology and viral clearance, might be beneficial for the host during certain circumstances. Our results provide important insight to our basic knowledge of immunosenescence and immune defenses to invading pathogens. Further, our results indicate that age factors should be considered when investigating the vaccination and therapeutic strategies for severe IAV infection.

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Entorhinal Cortex Atrophy in Early, Drug-naive Parkinson’s Disease with Mild Cognitive Impairment
Xiuqin Jia, Zhijiang Wang, Tao Yang, Ying Li, Shuai Gao, Guorong Wu, Tao Jiang, Peipeng Liang
Aging and disease    2019, 10 (6): 1221-1232.   DOI: 10.14336/AD.2018.1116
Accepted: 18 November 2018
Online available: 18 November 2018

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Patients with Parkinson’s disease (PD) generally have a higher proportion of suffering from mild cognitive impairment (MCI) than normal aged adults. This study aimed to identify the specific neuroanatomical alterations in early, drug-naive PD with MCI (PD-MCI) by comparing to those PD with normal cognition (PD-NC) and healthy controls (HCs), which could help to elucidate the underlying neuropathology and facilitate the development of early therapeutic strategies for treating this disease. Structural MRI data of 237 early, drug-naive non-demented PD patients (classified as 61 PD-MCI and 176 PD-NC) and 69 HCs were included from Parkinson's Progression Markers Initiative (PPMI) database after data quality control. Within these data, a subset of 61 HCs and a subset of 61 PD-NC who were matched to the 61 PD-MCI group for age, gender, and education-level were selected to further eliminate the sample size effect. The gray matter (GM) volume changes between groups were analyzed using voxel-based morphometry (VBM). Furthermore, correlations between GM volume alterations and neuropsychological performances and non-cognitive assessments (including olfactory performance) were further examined. Compared to HC, patients with PD-NC and PD-MCI commonly exhibited atrophies in the bilateral amygdala (AM) and the left primary motor cortex (M1). Patients with PD-MCI exclusively exhibited atrophy in the right entorhinal cortex (ENT) compared to PD-NC. Significantly negative correlations were found between GM loss in the bilateral AM and olfactory performance in all PD patients, and between ENT loss and memory performance in PD-MCI. The findings suggest that the right ENT atrophy may subserve as a biomarker in early, drug-naive PD-MCI, which shed light on the neural underpinnings of the disease and provide new evidence on differentiating the neuroanatomical states between PD-MCI and PD-NC.

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The Emerging Role of Sestrin2 in Cell Metabolism, and Cardiovascular and Age-Related Diseases
Wanqing Sun, Yishi Wang, Yang Zheng, Nanhu Quan
Aging and disease    2020, 11 (1): 154-163.   DOI: 10.14336/AD.2019.0320
Accepted: 30 March 2019

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Sestrins (Sesns), including Sesn1, Sesn2, and Sesn3, are cysteine sulfinyl reductases that play critical roles in the regulation of peroxide signaling and oxidant defense. Sesn2 is thought to regulate cell growth, metabolism, and survival response to various stresses, and act as a positive regulator of autophagy. The anti-oxidative and anti-aging roles of Sesn2 have been the focus of many recent studies. The role of Sesn2 in cellular metabolism and cardiovascular and age-related diseases must be analyzed and discussed. In this review, we discuss the physiological and pathophysiological roles and signaling pathways of Sesn2 in different stress-related conditions, such as oxidative stress, genotoxic stress, and hypoxia. Sesn2 is also involved in aging, cancer, diabetes, and ischemic heart disease. Understanding the actions of Sesn2 in cell metabolism and age-related diseases will provide new evidence for future experimental research and aid in the development of novel therapeutic strategies for Sesn2-related diseases.

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Danggui-Shaoyao-San: New Hope for Alzheimer's Disease
Fu Xin, Wang QiuHong, Wang ZhiBin, Kuang HaiXue, Jiang Pinghui
Aging and disease    2016, 7 (4): 502-513.   DOI: 10.14336/AD.2015.1220
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Danggui-Shaoyao-San (DSS), also called Toki-shakuyaku-san (TJ-23) or Dangguijakyak-san (DJS), is a well-known herbal formula (Angelica sinensis (Oliv.) Diels., Ligusticum chuanxiong Hort., Paeonia lactiflora pall., Poria cocos (Schw.) Wolf, Alisma orientalis (Sam.) Juzep., Atractylodes macrocephala Koidz.), which has been widely used in oriental countries for the treatment of various gynecological diseases. Recent studies show that DSS has an effect on free radical-mediated neurological diseases and exhibits anti-inflammatory and antioxidant activities and reduces cell apoptosis in the hippocampus. In addition, DSS mediates the modulation of central monoamine neurotransmitter systems and ameliorates dysfunction of the central cholinergic nervous system and scopolamine-induced decrease in ACh levels. DSS improves the function of the dopaminergic, adrenergic, and serotonergic nervous systems. Interestingly, DSS can alleviate cognitive dysfunction of Alzheimer's disease (AD) patients, suggesting that it is a useful therapeutic agent for AD. This paper reviews the mechanism of DSS for the treatment of AD.

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TOPK Promotes Microglia/Macrophage Polarization towards M2 Phenotype via Inhibition of HDAC1 and HDAC2 Activity after Transient Cerebral Ischemia
Han Ziping, Zhao Haiping, Tao Zhen, Wang Rongliang, Fan Zhibin, Luo Yumin, Luo Yinghao, Ji Xunming
Aging and disease    2018, 9 (2): 235-248.   DOI: 10.14336/AD.2017.0328
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T-LAK-cell-originated protein kinase (TOPK) is a newly identified member of the mitogen-activated protein kinase family. Our previous study has showed that TOPK has neuroprotective effects against cerebral ischemia-reperfusion injury. Here, we investigated the involvement of TOPK in microglia/ macrophage M1/M2 polarization and the underlying epigenetic mechanism. The expression profiles, co-localization and in vivo interaction of TOPK, M1/M2 surface markers, and HDAC1/HDAC2 were detected after middle cerebral artery occlusion models (MCAO). We demonstrated that TOPK, the M2 surface markers CD206 and Arg1, p-HDAC1, and p-HDAC2 showed a similar pattern of in vivo expression over time after MCAO. TOPK co-localized with CD206, p-HDAC1, and p-HDAC2 positive cells, and was shown to bind to HDAC1 and HDAC2. In vitro study showed that TOPK overexpression in BV2 cells up-regulated CD206 and Arg1, and promoted the phosphorylation of HDAC1 and HDAC2. In addition, TOPK overexpression also prevented LPS plus IFN-γ-induced M1 transformation through reducing release of inflammatory factor of M1 phenotype TNF-α, IL-6 and IL-1β, and increasing TGF-β release and the mRNA levels of TGF-β and SOCS3, cytokine of M2 phenotype and its regulator. Moreover, the increased TNF-α induced by TOPK siRNA could be reversed by HDAC1/HDAC2 inhibitor, FK228. TOPK overexpression increased M2 marker expression in vivo concomitant with the amelioration of cerebral injury, neurological functions deficits, whereas TOPK silencing had the opposite effects, which were completely reversed by the FK228 and partially by the SAHA. These findings suggest that TOPK positively regulates microglia/macrophage M2 polarization by inhibiting HDAC1/HDAC2 activity, which may contribute to its neuroprotective effects against cerebral ischemia-reperfusion injury.

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Anti-Aging Implications of Astragalus Membranaceus (Huangqi): A Well-Known Chinese Tonic
Liu Ping, Zhao Haiping, Luo Yumin
Aging and disease    2017, 8 (6): 868-886.   DOI: 10.14336/AD.2017.0816
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Owing to a dramatic increase in average life expectancy and the Family Planning program of the 1970s - 1990s, China is rapidly becoming an aging society. Therefore, the investigation of healthspan-extending drugs becomes more urgent. Astragalus membranaceus (Huangqi) is a major medicinal herb that has been commonly used in many herbal formulations in the practice of traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) to treat a wide variety of diseases and body disorders, or marketed as life-prolonging extracts for human use in China, for more than 2000 years. The major components of Astragalus membranaceus are polysaccharides, flavonoids, and saponins. Pharmacological research indicates that the extract component of Astragalus membranaceus can increase telomerase activity, and has antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, immunoregulatory, anticancer, hypolipidemic, antihyperglycemic, hepatoprotective, expectorant, and diuretic effects. A proprietary extract of the dried root of Astragalus membranaceus, called TA-65, was associated with a significant age-reversal effect in the immune system. Our review focuses on the function and the underlying mechanisms of Astragalus membranaceus in lifespan extension, anti-vascular aging, anti-brain aging, and anti-cancer effects, based on experimental and clinical studies.

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A Comprehensive Review of Non-Steroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drug Use in The Elderly
Wongrakpanich Supakanya, Wongrakpanich Amaraporn, Melhado Katie, Rangaswami Janani
Aging and disease    2018, 9 (1): 143-150.   DOI: 10.14336/AD.2017.0306
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NSAIDs, non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, are one of the most commonly prescribed pain medications. It is a highly effective drug class for pain and inflammation; however, NSAIDs are known for multiple adverse effects, including gastrointestinal bleeding, cardiovascular side effects, and NSAID induced nephrotoxicity. As our society ages, it is crucial to have comprehensive knowledge of this class of medication in the elderly population. Therefore, we reviewed the pharmacodynamics and pharmacokinetics, current guidelines for NSAIDs use, adverse effect profile, and drug interaction of NSAIDs and commonly used medications in the elderly.

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Macrophages in Noise-Exposed Cochlea: Changes, Regulation and the Potential Role
Weiwei He, Jintao Yu, Yu Sun, Weijia Kong
Aging and disease    2020, 11 (1): 191-199.   DOI: 10.14336/AD.2019.0723
Accepted: 29 July 2019

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Acoustic trauma is an important physical factor leading to cochlear damage and hearing impairments. Inflammation responds to this kind of cochlear damage stress. Macrophages, the major innate immune cells in the cochlea, are important drivers of inflammatory and tissue repair responses after cochlear injury. Recently, studies have shown that after noise exposure, the distribution, phenotype, and the number of cochlear macrophages have significantly changed, and the local environmental factors that shape macrophage differentiation and behavior are also drastically altered. However, the exact role of these immune cells in the cochlea after acoustic injury remains unknown. Here we review the properties of cochlear macrophages both under steady-state conditions and non-homeostatic conditions after cochlear acoustic injury and discuss their potential role in noise-exposed cochlea.

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Novel Insights on Systemic and Brain Aging, Stroke, Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis, and Alzheimer’s Disease
Ashok K. Shetty, Raghavendra Upadhya, Leelavathi N. Madhu, Maheedhar Kodali
Aging and disease    2019, 10 (2): 470-482.   DOI: 10.14336/AD.2019.0330
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The mechanisms that underlie the pathophysiology of aging, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), Alzheimer’s disease (AD) and stroke are not fully understood and have been the focus of intense and constant investigation worldwide. Studies that provide insights on aging and age-related disease mechanisms are critical for advancing novel therapies that promote successful aging and prevent or cure multiple age-related diseases. The April 2019 issue of the journal, "Aging & Disease" published a series of articles that confer fresh insights on numerous age-related conditions and diseases. The age-related topics include the detrimental effect of overweight on energy metabolism and muscle integrity, senoinflammation as the cause of neuroinflammation, the link between systemic C-reactive protein and brain white matter loss, the role of miR-34a in promoting healthy heart and brain, the potential of sirtuin 3 for reducing cardiac and pulmonary fibrosis, and the promise of statin therapy for ameliorating asymptomatic intracranial atherosclerotic stenosis. Additional aging-related articles highlighted the involvement of miR-181b-5p and high mobility group box-1 in hypertension, Yes-associated protein in cataract formation, multiple miRs and long noncoding RNAs in coronary artery disease development, the role of higher meat consumption on sleep problems, and the link between glycated hemoglobin and depression. The topics related to ALS suggested that individuals with higher education and living in a rural environment have a higher risk for developing ALS, and collagen XIX alpha 1 is a prognostic biomarker of ALS. The topics discussed on AD implied that extracellular amyloid β42 is likely the cause of intraneuronal neurofibrillary tangle accumulation in familial AD and traditional oriental concoctions may be useful for slowing down the progression of AD. The article on stroke suggested that inhibition of the complement system is likely helpful in promoting brain repair after ischemic stroke. The significance of the above findings for understanding the pathogenesis in aging, ALS, AD, and stroke, slowing down the progression of aging, ALS and AD, and promoting brain repair after stroke are discussed.

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Handgrip Strength and Pulmonary Disease in the Elderly: What is the Link?
Tatiana Rafaela Lemos Lima, Vívian Pinto Almeida, Arthur Sá Ferreira, Fernando Silva Guimarães, Agnaldo José Lopes
Aging and disease    2019, 10 (5): 1109-1129.   DOI: 10.14336/AD.2018.1226
Accepted: 31 December 2018

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Societies in developed countries are aging at an unprecedented rate. Considering that aging is the most significant risk factor for many chronic lung diseases (CLDs), understanding this process may facilitate the development of new interventionist approaches. Skeletal muscle dysfunction is a serious problem in older adults with CLDs, reducing their quality of life and survival. In this study, we reviewed the possible links between handgrip strength (HGS)—a simple, noninvasive, low-cost measure of muscle function—and CLDs in the elderly. Different mechanisms appear to be involved in this association, including systemic inflammation, chronic hypoxemia, physical inactivity, malnutrition, and corticosteroid use. Respiratory and peripheral myopathy, associated with muscle atrophy and a shift in muscle fiber type, also seem to be major etiological contributors to CLDs. Moreover, sarcopenic obesity, which occurs in older adults with CLDs, impairs common inflammatory pathways that can potentiate each other and further accelerate the functional decline of HGS. Our findings support the concept that the systemic effects of CLDs may be determined by HGS, and HGS is a relevant measurement that should be considered in the clinical assessment of the elderly with CLDs. These reasons make HGS a useful practical tool for indirectly evaluating functional status in the elderly. At present, early muscle reconditioning and optimal nutrition appear to be the most effective approaches to reduce the impact of CLDs and low muscle strength on the quality of life of these individuals. Nonetheless, larger in-depth studies are needed to evaluate the link between HGS and CLDs.

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Metastasis Patterns and Prognosis of Octogenarians with NSCLC: A Population-based Study
Yu Gu, Junhua Zhang, Zhirui Zhou, Di Liu, Hongcheng Zhu, Junmiao Wen, Xinyan Xu, Tianxiang Chen, Min Fan
Aging and disease    2020, 11 (1): 82-92.   DOI: 10.14336/AD.2019.0414
Accepted: 07 May 2019

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Non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) is the most common cancer and the leading cause of cancer-related deaths worldwide. Age at diagnosis of advanced NSCLC is much older, but studies describing the practice patterns for octogenarians with distant metastasis NSCLC are limited. A retrospective, population-based study using national representative data from the Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results (SEER) program was conducted to evaluate 34 882 NSCLC patients with extrathoracic metastases from 2010 to 2013. Patients were classified into three groups (older group: ≥80 yrs, middle-aged group: 60-79 yrs, and younger group: ≤59 yrs). The role of different age at diagnosis of NSCLC in metastasis patterns was investigated, and survival of different age groups of metastatic NSCLC was assessed. The analysis revealed that older patients were more likely to only have bone or liver metastasis (p< 0.001), but less likely to have brain only metastasis (p<0.001) and multiple metastatic sites (p< 0.001) than other two groups. Age at diagnosis was an independent risk factor for different metastasis types. Older group had the worst overall survival (p<0.001) and cancer-specific survival (p<0.001). Furthermore, older age patients with only bone metastasis had the best cancer specific survival (p<0.05) while younger patients with only brain metastasis had the best prognosis (p<0.001). Over 60% octogenarians with metastatic NSCLC did not receive anti-cancer therapy and had the highest rate of cancer deaths among all patients. Our results may help clinicians make positive decisions regarding personalized treatment of metastatic NSCLC in the elderly.

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Pyroptosis in Liver Disease: New Insights into Disease Mechanisms
Jiali Wu, Su Lin, Bo Wan, Bharat Velani, Yueyong Zhu
Aging and disease    2019, 10 (5): 1094-1108.   DOI: 10.14336/AD.2019.0116
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There has been increasing interest in pyroptosis as a novel form of pro-inflammatory programmed cell death. The mechanism of pyroptosis is significantly different from other forms of cell death in its morphological and biochemical features. Pyroptosis is characterized by the activation of two different types of caspase enzymes—caspase-1 and caspase-4/5/11, and by the occurrence of a proinflammatory cytokine cascade and an immune response. Pyroptosis participates in the immune defense mechanisms against intracellular bacterial infections. On the other hand, excessive inflammasome activation can induce sterile inflammation and eventually cause some diseases, such as acute or chronic hepatitis and liver fibrosis. The mechanism and biological significance of this novel form of cell death in different liver diseases will be evaluated in this review. Specifically, we will focus on the role of pyroptosis in alcoholic and non-alcoholic fatty liver disease, as well as in liver failure. Finally, the therapeutic implications of pyroptosis in liver diseases will be discussed.

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Gut Microbiome and Osteoporosis
Kai Ding, Fei Hua, Wenge Ding
Aging and disease    2020, 11 (2): 438-447.   DOI: 10.14336/AD.2019.0523
Accepted: 14 June 2019

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Gut microbiome refers to the microbes that live in human digestive tract and are symbiotic with the human body. They participate in the regulation of various physiological and pathological processes of the human body and are associated with various diseases. The pathological process of osteoporosis is affected by gut microbes. The molecular mechanisms of osteoporosis mainly include: 1) Intestinal barrier and nutrient absorption (involving SCFAs). 2) Immunoregulation (Th-17 and T-reg cells balance). 3) Regulation of intestinal-brain axis (involving 5-HT). Gut microbes can increase bone mass and improve osteoporosis by inhibiting osteoclast proliferation and differentiation, inducing apoptosis, reducing bone resorption, or promoting osteoblast proliferation and maturation. However, the therapeutic effect of gut microbes on osteoporosis remains to be further proven. At present, some of the findings on the impact of gut microbes on osteoporosis has been applied in clinical, including early diagnosis and intervention of osteoporosis and adjuvant therapy. In this article, we reviewed the molecular mechanisms underlying the regulatory effect of gut microbes on osteoporosis and the clinical practice of using gut microbes to improve bone health.

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Genetic Spectrum and Variability in Chinese Patients with Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis
Zhi-Jun Liu, Hui-Xia Lin, Qiao Wei, Qi-Jie Zhang, Cong-Xin Chen, Qing-Qing Tao, Gong-Lu Liu, Wang Ni, Aaron D Gitler, Hong-Fu Li, Zhi-Ying Wu
Aging and disease    2019, 10 (6): 1199-1206.   DOI: 10.14336/AD.2019.0215
Accepted: 02 March 2019

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Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) is a progressive, fatal neurodegenerative disease characterized by selective impairment of upper and lower motor neurons. We aimed to investigate the genetic spectrum and variability in Chinese patients with ALS. A total of 24 familial ALS (FALS) and 21 early-onset sporadic ALS (SALS) of Chinese ancestry were enrolled. Targeted next-generation sequencing (NGS) was performed in the probands, followed by verification by Sanger sequencing and co-segregation analysis. Clinical features of patients with pathogenic or likely pathogenic variants were present. The mutation frequency of ALS-related genes was then analyzed in Chinese population. In this cohort, 17 known mutations (9 SOD1, 5 FUS, 2 TARDBP and one SETX) were identified in 14 FALS and 6 early-onset SALS. Moreover, 7 novel variants (SOD1 c.112G>C, OPTN c.811C>T, ERBB4 c.965T>A, DCTN1 c.1915C>T, NEFH c.2602G>A, NEK1 c.3622G>A, and TAF15 c.1535G>A) were identified. In southeastern Chinese FALS, the mutation frequency of SOD1, FUS, and TARDBP was 52.9%, 8.8%, 8.8% respectively. In early-onset SALS, FUS mutations were the most common (22.6%). In Chinese ALS cases, p.H47R is most frequent SOD1 mutations, while p.R521 is most common FUS mutation and p.M337V is most common TARDBP mutation. Our results revealed that mutations in SOD1, FUS and TARDBP are the most common cause of Chinese FALS, while FUS mutations are the most common cause of early-onset SALS. The genetic spectrum is different between Chinese ALS and Caucasian ALS.

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Neurological Manifestation of Incretin-Based Therapies in Patients with Type 2 Diabetes: A Systematic Review and Network Meta-Analysis
Le Gao, Shuqing Yu, Andrea Cipriani, Shanshan Wu, Yi Huang, Zilu Zhang, Jun Yang, Yixin Sun, Zhirong Yang, Sanbao Chai, Yuan Zhang, Linong Ji, Siyan Zhan, Feng Sun
Aging and disease    2019, 10 (6): 1311-1319.   DOI: 10.14336/AD.2019.0303
Accepted: 23 March 2019

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As a new class of antidiabetic drug, incretin-based therapies, which include dipeptidyl peptidase-4 inhibitors (DPP-4Is) and glucagon-like peptide-1 receptor agonists (GLP-1 RAs), have raised concerns about symptoms of withdrawal in patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM), such as dizziness and headache. To systematically evaluate whether incretin-based therapies may lead to dizziness and headache in patients with T2DM compared to other traditional antidiabetic drugs or placebo. We searched Medline, Embase, the Cochrane library, and clinicaltrials.gov from inception through June 23, 2017, to identify randomized controlled trials of the safety of DPP-4Is or GLP-1 RAs versus placebo or other antidiabetic drugs in T2DM patients. We used the network meta-analysis under the frequentist framework to compare the association between multiple antidiabetic drugs and dizziness and headache. A total of 233 clinical trials with nine treatments and 147,710 patients were included: two incretin-based therapies, one placebo, and six traditional antidiabetic drugs (metformin, insulin, sulfonylurea, thiazolidinediones, alpha-glucosidase inhibitor, and sodium-glucose co-transporter 2). Compared to insulin, thiazolidinediones, or placebo, GLP-1 RAs statistically significantly increased the risk of dizziness (odds ratios [ORs]: 1.92, 1.57, and 1.40, respectively) and headache (ORs: 1.34, 1.41, and 1.18, respectively). DPP-4Is increased the risk of headache (OR: 1.22, 95% confidence interval [CI]: 1.02 to 1.46; moderate quality) and dizziness (OR: 1.46, 95% CI: 1.05 to 2.03; moderate quality) compared to insulin. Of the incretin-based therapies, DPP-4Is had a lower risk of dizziness than GLP-1 RAs (OR: 0.76, 95% CI: 0.67 to 0.87; high quality). Ranking probability analysis indicated that GLP-1 RAs may have the greatest risk of both dizziness and headache among the nine treatments (22.5% and 23.4%, respectively), whereas DPP-4Is were in the middle (46.2% and 45.0%, respectively). Incretin-based therapies increase the risk of dizziness and headache compared to insulin, thiazolidinediones, and placebo.

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Neuropsychological Deficits Chronically Developed after Focal Ischemic Stroke and Beneficial Effects of Pharmacological Hypothermia in the Mouse
Weiwei Zhong, Yan Yuan, Xiaohuan Gu, Samuel In-young Kim, Ryan Chin, Modupe Loye, Thomas A Dix, Ling Wei, Shan Ping Yu
Aging and disease    2020, 11 (1): 1-16.   DOI: 10.14336/AD.2019.0507
Accepted: 13 May 2019

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Stroke is a leading cause of human death and disability, with around 30% of stroke patients develop neuropsychological/neuropsychiatric symptoms, such as post-stroke depression (PSD). Basic and translational research on post-stroke psychological disorders is limited. In a focal ischemic stroke mouse model with selective damage to the sensorimotor cortex, sensorimotor deficits develop soon after stroke and spontaneous recovery is observed in 2-4 weeks. We identified that mice subjected to a focal ischemic insult gradually developed depression/anxiety like behaviors 4 to 8 weeks after stroke. Psychological/psychiatric disorders were revealed in multiple behavioral examinations, including the forced swim, tail suspension, sucrose preference, and open field tests. Altered neuronal plasticity such as suppressed long-term potentiation (LTP), reduced BDNF and oxytocin signaling, and disturbed dopamine synthesis/uptake were detected in the prefrontal cortex (PFC) during the chronic phase after stroke. Pharmacological hypothermia induced by the neurotensin receptor 1 (NTR1) agonist HPI-363 was applied as an acute treatment after stroke. A six-hr hypothermia treatment applied 45 min after stroke prevented depression and anxiety like behaviors examined at 6 weeks after stroke, as well as restored BDNF expression and oxytocin signaling. Additionally, hypothermia induced by physical cooling also showed an anti-depression and anti-anxiety effect. The data suggested a delayed beneficial effect of acute hypothermia treatment on chronically developed post-stroke neuropsychological disorders, associated with regulation of synaptic plasticity, neurotrophic factors, dopaminergic activity, and oxytocin signaling in the PFC.

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Autonomic Cardiovascular Damage during Post-menopause: the Role of Physical Training
Hugo C. D. Souza, Geisa C. S. V. Tezini
Aging and Disease    2013, 4 (6): 320-328.   DOI: 10.14336/AD.2013.0400320
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Menopause is part of the aging process and is characterized by the natural cessation of menstruation; during this time, the production of ovarian hormones, especially estrogen, is sharply reduced. This reduction can cause symptoms and disorders that affect most women and can interfere with their quality of life. Women are also more susceptible to cardiovascular diseases during this period, considering that these ovarian hormones would be associated with a protective effect on the cardiovascular system, by acting at various levels, contributing to the body homeostasis. Among several effects on the cardiovascular system, the ovarian hormones seem to play an important role in the autonomic control of heart rate and blood pressure. A reduction in ovarian hormones causes an autonomic imbalance and increases the risk of cardiovascular diseases. In fact, this increased risk is justified by the key role the autonomic nervous system plays in all cardiac regulatory mechanisms, exerting a tonic and reflexive influence on the main variables of the cardiovascular system. The autonomic system controls various cardiovascular parameters, such as the modulation of heart rate and blood pressure, myocardial contractility and venous capacitance, directly participating in the regulation of cardiac output. Over the years, the standard treatment for menopause symptoms and disorders has been hormone replacement therapy (HRT). However, many studies have indicated the risks of HRT, which justify the need for new non-pharmacological therapies. To this end, physical training, mainly aerobic, has been applied with excellent results on the cardiovascular autonomic nervous system, as it reduces the risk of cardiac diseases and improves the survival rate with direct beneficial effects on the quality of life of these women during the aging process.

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The Potential Markers of Circulating microRNAs and long non-coding RNAs in Alzheimer's Disease
Yanfang Zhao, Yuan Zhang, Lei Zhang, Yanhan Dong, Hongfang Ji, Liang Shen
Aging and disease    2019, 10 (6): 1293-1301.   DOI: 10.14336/AD.2018.1105
Accepted: 13 November 2018

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Alzheimer’s disease (AD) is a neurodegenerative disorder and one of the leading causes of disability and mortality in the late life with no curative treatment currently. Thus, it is urgently to establish sensitive and non-invasive biomarkers for AD diagnosis, particularly in the early stage. Recently, emerging number of microRNAs (miRNAs) and long-noncoding RNAs (lncRNAs) are considered as effective biomarkers in various diseases as they possess characteristics of stable, resistant to RNAase digestion and many extreme conditions in circulatory fluid. This review highlights recent advances in the identification of the aberrantly expressed miRNAs and lncRNAs in circulatory network for detection of AD. We summarized the abnormal expressed miRNAs in blood and cerebrospinal fluid (CSF), and detailed discussed the functions and molecular mechanism of serum or plasma miRNAs-miR-195, miR-155, miR-34a, miR-9, miR-206, miR-125b and miR-29 in the regulation of AD progression. In addition, we also elaborated the role of circulating lncRNA major including beta-site APP cleaving enzyme 1 (BACE1) and its antisense lncRNA BACE1-AS in AD pathological advancement. In brief, confirming the aberrantly expressed circulating miRNAs and lncRNAs will provide an effective testing tools for treatment of AD in the future.

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Understanding the Physiological Links Between Physical Frailty and Cognitive Decline
Lina Ma, Piu Chan
Aging and disease    2020, 11 (2): 405-418.   DOI: 10.14336/AD.2019.0521
Accepted: 30 May 2019

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Declines in both physical and cognitive function are associated with increasing age. Understanding the physiological link between physical frailty and cognitive decline may allow us to develop interventions that prevent and treat both conditions. Although there is significant epidemiological evidence linking physical frailty to cognitive decline, a complete understanding of the underpinning biological basis of the two disorders remains fragmented. This narrative review discusses insights into the potential roles of chronic inflammation, impaired hypothalamic-pituitary axis stress response, imbalanced energy metabolism, mitochondrial dysfunction, oxidative stress, and neuroendocrine dysfunction linking physical frailty with cognitive decline. We highlight the importance of easier identification of strategic approaches delaying the progression and onset of physical frailty and cognitive decline as well as preventing disability in the older population.

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Contrast Staining may be Associated with Intracerebral Hemorrhage but Not Functional Outcome in Acute Ischemic Stroke Patients Treated with Endovascular Thrombectomy
Hong An, Wenbo Zhao, Jianguo Wang, Joshua C Wright, Omar Elmadhoun, Di Wu, Shuyi Shang, Chuanjie Wu, Chuanhui Li, Longfei Wu, Jian Chen, Jiangang Duan, Hongqi Zhang, Haiqing Song, Yuchuan Ding, Xunming Ji
Aging and disease    2019, 10 (4): 784-792.   DOI: 10.14336/AD.2018.0807
Accepted: 21 August 2018

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To evaluate the incidence of post-interventional contrast staining (PICS) in acute ischemic stroke (AIS) Chinese patients who were treated with endovascular thrombectomy (ET) and investigate potential association of PICS with functional outcome and intracerebral hemorrhage (ICH). This observational study was based on a single-center prospective registry study. AIS patients who underwent ET from January 2013 to February 2017 were recruited into this study. All patients had dual-energy CT (DECT) scan of the head at 12 to 24 hours post-ET. The primary outcome was the incidence of PICS. Secondary outcomes were total ICH, symptomatic ICH (sICH), 3-month functional outcome, and long-term functional outcome. One hundred and eighty patients were enrolled in this study. PICS was detected in 50 patients (28%) based on the post-interventional CT scan. We first used basic statistical analyses, showing that the incidence of both total ICH (60% vs. 25%, p<0.001) and sICH (18% vs. 8%, p=0.044) were higher in patients with PICS than those without, and fewer patients achieved no disability (mRS≤1) in the PICS group compared to the control group at both 3-month and long-term follow-up (p<0.01 each). However, multivariate regression analysis further revealed that PICS only increased total (adjusted odds ratio, 7.38; 95% confidence interval 1.66 to 32.9; p=0.009) but not sICH risk. Furthermore, the logistic regression analyses did not show statistical difference in good clinical outcomes or mortality between the two groups. PICS is a common phenomenon in Chinese AIS patients. It is associated with total ICH after ET, but it seems to have no effect on functional outcome and sICH. Further large-scale studies are warranted to validate these results.

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Successful Aging among Elders Living in the Mani Continental Region vs. Insular Areas of the Mediterranean: the MEDIS Study
Mariolis Anargiros, Foscolou Alexandra, Tyrovolas Stefanos, Piscopo Suzanne, Valacchi Giuseppe, Tsakountakis Nikos, Zeimbekis Akis, Bountziouka Vassiliki, Gotsis Efthimios, Metallinos George, Tyrovola Dimitra, Tur Josep-Antoni, Matalas Antonia-Leda, Lionis Christos, Polychronopoulos Evangelos, Panagiotakos Demosthenes, for the MEDIS study group
Aging and disease    2016, 7 (3): 285-294.   DOI: 10.14336/AD.2015.1002
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To evaluate the role of geography i.e., continental vs. insular Mediterranean, on successful aging among older inhabitants. During 2005-2014, 2693 elderly (aged 65 to 100 years) individuals from 21 Mediterranean islands in Greece, Italy and Spain as well as Cyprus, Malta, and the rural region of Mani (southeast continental region of Greece keeping old-time traditions), were voluntarily recruited. Successful aging was evaluated using a validated index composed of 10 health-related socio-lifestyle and clinical characteristics. After accounting for age, sex, body mass index (BMI), physical activity, smoking habits, MedDietScore and access to health care services, the older inhabitants of islands were found to have a higher level of the successful aging index when compared to their counterparts in Mani (Beta=0.174, p<0.001); moreover, islanders exhibited slightly more years of “good” health (68.7 vs 68.4 years for Mani residents (p=0.99)). However, compared to the residents of Mani, islanders had 1.64 times higher odds (95%CI, 1.08-2.48) for having hypertension, 2.4-times higher odds (95%CI, 1.34-4.21) for having diabetes and 1.52 times higher odds (95%CI, 0.97-2.38) for having hypercholesterolemia. Engaging in physical activities and healthy dietary habits were the major determinants of healthy aging, among islanders as compared to their counterparts of continental Mani region. Elder residents of the continental Mani area enjoyed a better health status, whereas elder islanders had a higher level of successful aging; a finding which could be attributed to differences in lifestyle among elders.

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The Anti-Inflammatory and Anti-Oxidant Mechanisms of the Keap1/Nrf2/ARE Signaling Pathway in Chronic Diseases
Wenjun Tu, Hong Wang, Song Li, Qiang Liu, Hong Sha
Aging and disease    2019, 10 (3): 637-651.   DOI: 10.14336/AD.2018.0513
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Oxidative stress is defined as an imbalance between production of free radicals and reactive metabolites or [reactive oxygen species (ROS)] and their elimination by through protective mechanisms, including (antioxidants). This Such imbalance leads to damage of cells and important biomolecules and cells, with hence posing a potential adverse impact on the whole organism. At the center of the day-to-day biological response to oxidative stress is the Kelch-like ECH-associated protein 1 (Keap1) - nuclear factor erythroid 2-related factor 2 (Nrf2)- antioxidant response elements (ARE) pathway, which regulates the transcription of many several antioxidant genes that preserve cellular homeostasis and detoxification genes that process and eliminate carcinogens and toxins before they can cause damage. The redox-sensitive signaling system Keap1/Nrf2/ARE plays a key role in the maintenance of cellular homeostasis under stress, inflammatory, carcinogenic, and pro-apoptotic conditions, which allows us to consider it as a pharmacological target. Herein, we review and discuss the recent advancements in the regulation of the Keap1/Nrf2/ARE system, and its role under physiological and pathophysiological conditions, e.g. such as in exercise, diabetes, cardiovascular diseases, cancer, neurodegenerative disorders, stroke, liver and kidney system, etc. and such.

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Necrostatin-1 Prevents Necroptosis in Brains after Ischemic Stroke via Inhibition of RIPK1-Mediated RIPK3/MLKL Signaling
Xu-Xu Deng, Shan-Shan Li, Feng-Yan Sun
Aging and disease    2019, 10 (4): 807-817.   DOI: 10.14336/AD.2018.0728
Accepted: 04 September 2018

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Pharmacological studies have indirectly shown that necroptosis participates in ischemic neuronal death. However, its mechanism has yet to be elucidated in the ischemic brain. TNFα-triggered RIPK1 kinase activation could initiate RIPK3/MLKL-mediated necroptosis under inhibition of caspase-8. In the present study, we performed middle cerebral artery occlusion (MCAO) to induce cerebral ischemia in rats and used immunoblotting and immunostaining combined with pharmacological analysis to study the mechanism of necroptosis in ischemic brains. In the ipsilateral hemisphere, we found that ischemia induced the increase of (i) RIPK1 phosphorylation at the Ser166 residue (p-RIPK1), representing active RIPK1 kinase and (ii) the number of cells that were double stained with P-RIPK1 (Ser166) (p-RIPK1+) and TUNEL, a label of DNA double-strand breaks, indicating cell death. Furthermore, ischemia induced activation of downstream signaling factors of RIPK1, RIPK3 and MLKL, as well as the formation of mature interleukin-1β (IL-1β). Treatment with necrostatin-1 (Nec-1), an inhibitor of necroptosis, significantly decreased ischemia-induced increase of p-RIPK1 expression and p-RIPK1+ neurons, which showed protection from brain damage. Meanwhile, Nec-1 reduced RIPK3, MLKL and p-MLKL expression levels and mature IL-1β formation in Nec-1 treated ischemic brains. Our results clearly demonstrated that phosphorylation of RIPK1 at the Ser166 residue was involved in the pathogenesis of necroptosis in the brains after ischemic injury. Nec-1 treatment protected brains against ischemic necroptosis by reducing the activation of RIPK1 and inhibiting its downstream signaling pathways. These results provide direct in vivo evidence that phosphorylated RIPK1 (Ser 166) plays an important role in the initiation of RIPK3/MLKL-dependent necroptosis in the pathogenesis of ischemic stroke in the rodent brain.

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The role of CD2AP in the Pathogenesis of Alzheimer's Disease
Qing-Qing Tao, Yu-Chao Chen, Zhi-Ying Wu
Aging and disease    2019, 10 (4): 901-907.   DOI: 10.14336/AD.2018.1025
Accepted: 08 December 2018

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Alzheimer’s disease (AD) is the most common neurodegenerative disease characterized by irreversible decline in cognition with unclear pathogenesis. Recently, accumulating evidence has revealed that CD2 associated protein (CD2AP), a scaffolding molecule regulates signal transduction and cytoskeletal molecules, is implicated in AD pathogenesis. Several single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in CD2AP gene are associated with higher risk for AD and mRNA levels of CD2AP are decreased in peripheral lymphocytes of sporadic AD patients. Furthermore, CD2AP loss of function is linked to enhanced Aβ production, Tau-induced neurotoxicity, abnormal neurite structure modulation and reduced blood-brain barrier integrity. This review is to summarize the recent discoveries about the genetics and known functions of CD2AP. The recent evidence concerning the roles of CD2AP in the AD pathogenesis is summarized and CD2AP can be a promising therapeutic target for AD.

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mHealth For Aging China: Opportunities and Challenges
Sun Jing, Guo Yutao, Wang Xiaoning, Zeng Qiang
Aging and disease    2016, 7 (1): 53-67.   DOI: 10.14336/AD.2015.1011
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The aging population with chronic and age-related diseases has become a global issue and exerted heavy burdens on the healthcare system and society. Neurological diseases are the leading chronic diseases in the geriatric population, and stroke is the leading cause of death in China. However, the uneven distribution of caregivers and critical healthcare workforce shortages are major obstacles to improving disease outcome. With the advancement of wearable health devices, cloud computing, mobile technologies and Internet of Things, mobile health (mHealth) is rapidly developing and shows a promising future in the management of chronic diseases. Its advantages include its ability to improve the quality of care, reduce the costs of care, and improve treatment outcomes by transferring in-hospital treatment to patient-centered medical treatment at home. mHealth could also enhance the international cooperation of medical providers in different time zones and the sharing of high-quality medical service resources between developed and developing countries. In this review, we focus on trends in mHealth and its clinical applications for the prevention and treatment of diseases, especially aging-related neurological diseases, and on the opportunities and challenges of mHealth in China. Operating models of mHealth in disease management are proposed; these models may benefit those who work within the mHealth system in developing countries and developed countries.

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Combining Injectable Plasma Scaffold with Mesenchymal Stem/Stromal Cells for Repairing Infarct Cavity after Ischemic Stroke
Zhang Hongxia, Sun Fen, Wang Jixian, Xie Luokun, Yang Chenqi, Pan Mengxiong, Shao Bei, Yang Guo-Yuan, Yang Shao-Hua, ZhuGe Qichuan, Jin Kunlin
Aging and disease    2017, 8 (2): 203-214.   DOI: 10.14336/AD.2017.0305
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Stroke survivors are typically left with structural brain damage and associated functional impairment in the chronic phase of injury, for which few therapeutic options exist. We reported previously that transplantation of human embryonic stem cell (hESC)-derived neural stem cells together with Matrigel scaffolding into the brains of rats after focal ischemia reduced infarct volume and improved neurobehavioral performance. Matrigel is a gelatinous protein mixture extracted from mouse sarcoma cells, thus would not be approved for use as a scaffold clinically. In this study, we generated a gel-like scaffold from plasma that was controlled by changing the concentration of CaCl2. In vitro study confirmed that 10-20 mM CaCl2 and 10-40% plasma did not affect the viability and proliferation of human and rat bone marrow mesenchymal stem/stromal cells (BMSCs) and neural stem cells (NSCs). We transplanted plasma scaffold in combination of BMSCs into the cystic cavity after focal cerebral ischemia, and found that the atrophy volume was dramatically reduced and motor function was significantly improved in the group transplanted with scaffold/BMSCs compared with the groups treated with vehicle, scaffold or BMSCs only. Our data suggest that plasma-derived scaffold in combination of BMSCs is feasible for tissue engineering approach for the stroke treatment.

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Deficiency of tPA Exacerbates White Matter Damage, Neuroinflammation, Glymphatic Dysfunction and Cognitive Dysfunction in Aging Mice
Peng Yu, Poornima Venkat, Michael Chopp, Alex Zacharek, Yi Shen, Linlin Liang, Julie Landschoot-Ward, Zhongwu Liu, Rongcai Jiang, Jieli Chen
Aging and disease    2019, 10 (4): 770-783.   DOI: 10.14336/AD.2018.0816
Accepted: 27 August 2018
Online available: 26 August 2018

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Tissue plasminogen activator (tPA) is a serine protease primarily involved in mediating thrombus breakdown and regulating catabolism of amyloid-beta (Aβ). The aim of this study is to investigate age-dependent decline of endogenous tPA and the effects of tPA decline on glymphatic function and cognitive outcome in mice. Male, young (3m), adult (6m) and middle-aged (12m) C57/BL6 (wild type) and tPA knockout (tPA-/-) mice were subject to a battery of cognitive tests and white matter (WM) integrity, neuroinflammation, and glymphatic function were evaluated. Adult WT mice exhibit significantly decreased brain tPA level compared to young WT mice and middle-aged WT mice have significantly lower brain tPA levels than young and adult WT mice. Middle-aged WT mice exhibit significant neuroinflammation, reduced WM integrity and increased thrombin deposition compared to young and adult mice, and increased blood brain barrier (BBB) permeability and reduced cognitive ability compared to young WT mice. In comparison to adult WT mice, adult tPA-/- mice exhibit significant BBB leakage, decreased dendritic spine density, increased thrombin deposition, neuroinflammation, and impaired functioning of the glymphatic system. Compared to age-matched WT mice, adult and middle-aged tPA-/- mice exhibit significantly increased D-Dimer expression and decreased perivascular Aquaporin-4 expression. Compared to age-matched WT mice, young, adult and middle-aged tPA-/- mice exhibit significant cognitive impairment, axonal damage, and increased deposition of amyloid precursor protein (APP), Aβ, and fibrin. Endogenous tPA may play an important role in contributing to aging induced cognitive decline, axonal/WM damage, BBB disruption and glymphatic dysfunction in the brain.

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Galectin-3 Mediates Endothelial-to-Mesenchymal Transition in Pulmonary Arterial Hypertension
Tangzhiming Li, Lihuang Zha, Hui Luo, Suqi Li, Lin Zhao, Jingni He, Xiaohui Li, Qiangqiang Qi, Yuwei Liu, Zaixin Yu
Aging and disease    2019, 10 (4): 731-745.   DOI: 10.14336/AD.2018.1001
Accepted: 27 November 2018

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Galectin-3 (Gal-3) is highly expressed in fibrotic tissue related to diverse etiologies. endothelial-to-mesenchymal transition (EndoMT), A less well studied phenomenon serves as a critical process in pulmonary vascular remodeling associated with the development of pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH). EndoMT is hypothesized to contribute to the over-proliferation of αSMA positive cells. We aim to investigate the potential role of Gal-3 in regulating EndoMT in PAH. We observed an upregulation in both Gal-3 and αSMA expression in the monocrotaline (MCT) and Hypoxia PAH model, accompanied with intimal thickening. For more profound vascular remodeling and endothelial layer lesion in former model, we employed Gal-3 knockdown and overexpression lentivirus methodology to the MCT rats to determine the mechanisms underlying abnormal endothelial cell transition in PAH. PAH was evaluated according to right ventricular systolic pressure, right heart hypertrophy and pulmonary artery remodeling. A reduction in Gal-3 was protective against the development of PAH, while Gal-3 upregulation aggravated pulmonary vascular occlusion. In addition, Gal-3 deficiency suppressed pulmonary vascular cell proliferation and macrophage infiltration. Finally, we revealed that in endothelial cells treated with tumor necrosis factor α and hypoxia (representing an in vitro model of PAH), inhibition of Gal-3 by siRNA was able to abolish the associated upregulation of αSMA. These observations suggesting Gal-3 serves as a critical mediator in PAH by regulating EndoMT. Inhibition of Gal-3 may represent a novel therapeutic target for PAH treatment.

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