Longevity and learning/memory are connected by a common protein?

Professor Li-Huei Tsai at MIT revealed that Siruins which have long been associated with Longevity. SIRT-1  protects against oxidative stress (the formation of highly reactive molecules that can damage cells) in the heart and maintains genome stability in multiple cell types. SIRT1 is thought to be a key regulator of an evolutionarily conserved pathway that enhances cell survival during times of stress, especially a lack of food.
In 2007, Tsai and her colleagues showed that sirtuins (the proteins produced by SIR or SIRT genes) protect neurons against neurodegeneration caused by disorders such as Alzheimer’s. They also found that sirtuins improved learning and memory, but believed that might be simply a byproduct of the neuron protection.

Tsai’s team demonstrated that sirtuins enhance synaptic plasticity by manipulating tiny snippets of genetic material known as microRNA, which have recently been discovered to play an important role in regulating gene expression.
Read more about this at the MIT website.
Before you consume lots of red wine to become smart, it may not quite work out that way. Note in the article the caution – Raul Mostoslavsky, assistant professor of medicine at Harvard Medical School, says the findings do suggest that activating SIRT1 could benefit patients with neurodegenerative diseases. “However, we will need to be very cautious before jumping to conclusions,” he says, “since SIRT1 has (multiple) effects in multiple cells and tissues, and therefore targeting specifically this brain function will be quite challenging.”
It might as well, read this article that says that SIRT1 gene absence is associated with loss of memory but boosting sirtuin1 protein does not have any beneficial effect.

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