Study in Cell Metabolism shows that mice eating less of a specific amino acid are healthier and longer-lived
Dudley Lamming, PhD, associate professor, Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism, is the lead author of a new study in mice, published recently in the journal Cell Metabolism, showing that cutting down the amount of a single amino acid called isoleucine can extend their lifespan, make them leaner and less frail as they age and reduce cancer and prostate problems.
Earlier data from UW–Madison’s Survey of the Health of Wisconsin showed that people vary in isoleucine intake, with leaner participants tending to eat a diet lower in isoleucine. Other data from Lamming’s lab suggest that overweight and obese Americans may be eating significantly more isoleucine than they need.
“We can’t just switch everyone to a low-isoleucine diet,” Dr. Lamming says. “But narrowing these benefits down to a single amino acid gets us closer to understanding the biological processes and maybe potential interventions for humans, like an isoleucine-blocking drug.”
Banner: Dudley Lamming, PhD, associate professor, Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism, in his lab. Credit: Clint Thayer/Department of Medicine.