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Medical News and Perspectives
August 10, 2005

Study Reveals Mitochondrial Role in Aging

JAMA. 2005;294(6):672. doi:10.1001/jama.294.6.672

Experiments that caused mice to quickly develop characteristics of premature aging reveal that mutations in mitochondrial DNA may play a key role in growing old.

For years, mitochondria have been linked to aging. In the new findings, researchers demonstrated that an accumulation of genetic mutations in mitochondria sets off a cascade of signals that causes programmed cell death, or apoptosis (Kujoth et al. Science. 2005;309:481-484). The result is loss of irreplaceable cells and progression of aging.

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