With selected press releases of the member institutes we inform you here about their research on ageing.

  1. Cognitive impairment in the elderly – What is the role of air pollution and lung function?
    03/19/2018 · IUF Leibniz Research Institute for Environmental Medicine

    A study from scientists at IUF – Leibniz Research Institute for Environmental Medicine in Düsseldorf, Germany, published in the European Respiratory Journal, indicates that poor lung function is not only a risk factor for cognitive impairment in elderly people but also partially mediates negative effects of air pollution on cognition.

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  2. Additional 5 Million Euro Funding for Aging Research in Jena, Germany
    03/09/2018 · FLI Leibniz Institute on Aging - Fritz Lipmann Institute

    The Leibniz Institute on Aging (FLI) in Jena, Germany, was approved 5 million EUR additional funding by the German Joint Science Conference (Gemeinsame Wissenschaftskonferenz, GWK), which thus implemented a proposal by the Senate of the German Leibniz Association. The funding is to be used to build up a new research focus on “Microbiome and Aging” at the Institute. In parallel, a recruitment effort to fill an associated tenured W3-professorship has already been initiated.

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  3. Cancer or degenerative diseases?
    01/31/2018 · FLI Leibniz Institute on Aging

    Above the age of 50, the most likely causes of death are cancer and degenerative diseases such as heart failure, dementia or diabetes. Since life expectancy has been considerably growing over the last 150 years, the frequency of age-specific diseases has also been on the rise. While death due to cancer is most prevalent among the 60 year olds, its contribution to total mortality declines at more advanced ages, while degenerative diseases are on the rise up to the oldest age groups. Why does this occur and can this shift in cause of death be at least partially explained by studying the molecular alterations that occur as we get older and compare them to the molecular signatures of each of these diseases? To address this question, a large-scale international collaborative effort involving research teams from Kiel and Jena, Germany, and from Maryland, USA, led by Professor Christoph Kaleta investigated to which extent conserved age-related changes in the activity of genes are connected to changes observed in aging diseases. Results from their study have now been published in the scientific journal Nature Communications.

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  4. Molecular Chaperones Shown to Assist in the Fight against Huntington Disease
    12/12/2017 · FMP Leibniz-Forschungsinstitut für Molekulare Pharmakologie

    Huntington’s disease is a neurodegenerative disease. It is always fatal. The disease is caused by a defect in the Huntingtin gene. To this day, no therapy will put a stop to the insidious disintegration of brain cells. Fortunately, scientists of the Leibniz-Forschungsinstitut für Molekulare Pharmakologie (FMP) in Berlin in collaboration with their peers working at the Max Delbrück Center for Molecular Medicine (MDC) and at the Charité University Hospital discovered a natural mechanism, which not only suppresses the build-up of pathogenic amyloid fibrils but also disaggregates them. The scientists declare that the newly discovered molecular chaperones may soon be crucial parts of new therapy approaches. Recently, they published their work in the EMBO Journal.

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  5. Tracking the effects of air pollution on the brain
    09/14/2017 · IUF Leibniz Institute for Environmental Medicine

    Researchers from the IUF – Leibniz Research Institute for Environmental Medicine in Düsseldorf (Germany) showed in collaboration with the Dutch National Institute for Public Health and the Environment (RIVM) in Bilthoven (The Netherlands) and with the Division of Molecular Psychiatry at the University Medical Center Göttingen (Germany) that traffic-related airborne pollutants accelerate the formation of amyloid plaques and enhance motor function impairment in a mouse model of Alzheimer’s disease. The corresponding study was recently published in the international journal „Particle and Fibre Toxicology“.

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  6. Enzyme produced in the liver promotes obesity, fatty liver disease and insulin resistance
    08/23/2017 · DIfE German Institute Human Nutrition Potsdam-Rehbrücke

    In mice that are given a high-fat diet, an increased production of the enzyme DPP4* by the liver promotes an increase in body fat, the development of fatty liver disease and insulin resistance. "In combination with our observations from additional human and cell studies, these results indicate that increased DPP4 production by the liver is the cause rather than the consequence of a fatty liver and insulin resistance," says the head of the study, Annette Schürmann from the German Institute for Human Nutrition Research (DIfE), a partner of the German Center for Diabetes Research (DZD). The research team led by Schürmann has now published its findings in Molecular Metabolism.

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  7. GSCN awards “Young Investigator Award“ for FLI-Scientist Francesco Neri
    08/21/2017 · FLI Leibniz Institute on Aging - Fritz Lipmann Institute

    Francesco Neri, PhD, research group leader at the Leibniz Institute on Aging – Fritz Lipmann Institute (FLI) in Jena, receives the „GSCN 2017 Young Investigator Award“ of the German Stem Cell Network.

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  8. New therapeutic attack point: Scientists find off-switch for the mTor complex
    06/06/2017 · FMP Leibniz-Institut für Molekulare Pharmakologie

    As the cell's molecular control center, the mTor kinase regulates cellular metabolism, growth and division. However, in cells affected by pathological change, the regulation goes array. Therefore, it would be helpful if the central control could be simply turned off to suppress insulin resistance or cancerous growth for example. Scientists at the Leibniz–Forschungsinstitut für Molekulare Pharmakologie (FMP) in Berlin (Germany) succeeded in locating a crucial off-switch for the central cell control. Paradoxically, this 'off-switch' is a lipid kinase producing a product previously known for its role in the activation of mTor. The results just appeared in the high-ranking journal 'Science'. They bolster the hopes of patients waiting for new effective therapies against diabetes, obesity, cancer and a rare congenital muscular disease.

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  9. A New Role for Autophagosomes in Neurodegeneration
    04/24/2017 · FMP Leibniz-Institut für Molekulare Pharmakologie

    Autophagosomes are at the center of attention, at least since the Nobel Prize for Medicine was awarded for research on autophagy in 2016. The much talked about autophagosomes are small membrane vesicles in charge of waste disposal to promote recycling of its components. Scientists of the Leibniz-Institut für Molekulare Pharmakologie (FMP) in Berlin and the CECAD Research Center in Cologne who work on degradation and recycling processes in cells, recently made a striking discovery: They found that autophagosomes transport growth signals such as brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) along axons (long slender nerve cell projections) to the cell body. This signaling process enables survival of nerve cells and stimulates the formation of new branched neurites that allow neurons to interconnect. Nerve cells in the brain will die if the autophagosomal taxis cease to operate. The new discovery shows autophagosomes in a completely new light and fuels hope for new treatments for Alzheimer's disease and other neurodegenerative diseases. The results of this research were just published in the renowned science journal Nature Communications.

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  10. Volker Haucke receives the Avanti Award in Lipids
    04/24/2017 · FMP Leibniz-Institut für Molekulare Pharmakologie

    The American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology (ASBMB) recognises Volker Haucke for his outstanding scientific achievements in membrane biology.

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  11. Researchers Find Gene WT1 to Impact Women’s Fertility
    03/29/2017 · FLI Leibniz Institute on Aging - Fritz Lipmann Institute

    It has been estimated that more than 80 million people in the world have an unfulfilled desire to have children. But for every 10th couple, the reasons therefor remain unclear. Now, researchers from the Leibniz Institute on Aging (FLI) in Jena/Germany have, together with clinical partners, found a new gene mutation that obviously leads to infertility in women. The mutated gene WT1 plays an important role in the early embryonic development controlling proteins (especially proteases) that are needed for the successful nidation in mother’s womb. The astonishing results were recently published in the journal Human Molecular Genetics.

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  12. Diabetes Drug May Improve Bone Fat-induced Defects of Fracture Healing
    03/20/2017 · DIfE German Institute of Human Nutrition Potsdam-Rehbruecke

    A new study led by the German Institute of Human Nutrition (DIfE), a partner of the German Center for Diabetes Research (DZD), shows that gliptins – well known from diabetes treatment – may oppose the detrimental effects of fat cell accumulation in the bone marrow to improve bone healing in older, overweight patients. The research team led by stem cell researchers Thomas H. Ambrosi and Tim J. Schulz has now published its findings in Cell Stem Cell (Ambrosi et al. 2017).

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  13. Men with Impaired Glucose Metabolism Should Avoid High-Carbohydrate Foods in the Evening
    03/09/2017 · DIfE German Institute of Human Nutrition Potsdam-Rehbruecke

    According to a nutrition study led by the German Institute of Human Nutrition (DIfE), a partner of the German Center for Diabetes Research, the so-called internal clock also influences how people with impaired glucose metabolism react to carbohydrate-rich food. For example, in men with prediabetes, abundant consumption of foods containing starch and sugar in the evening had a negative effect on their blood glucose regulation. In comparison, in healthy study participants the timing of carbohydrate intake did not play a significant role in blood glucose regulation.

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  14. Poster & PhD Award for young scientists at the 2nd International Symposium Healthy Ageing
    03/06/2017 · LFV Healthy Ageing

    During the 2nd International Symposium Healthy Ageing, young researchers received the Poster as well as the Presentation Award.

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  15. Pizza, burgers and the like: A single high-fat meal can damage the metabolism and prepare the path to fatty liver disease and diabetes
    03/03/2017 · DDZ Deutsches Diabetes-Zentrum

    In the current issue of the “Journal of Clinical Investigation”, DZD researchers working at the German Diabetes Center, in conjunction with the Helmholtz Center in Munich and colleagues from Portugal, published a scientific investigation conducted on healthy, slim men, who were given at random a flavored palm oil drink or a glass of clear water in a control experiment. The palm oil drink contained a similar amount of saturated fat as two cheeseburgers with bacon and a large portion of French fries or two salami pizzas. The scientists showed that this single high-fat meal sufficed to reduce the insulin action, e.g. cause insulin resistance and increase the fat content of the liver. In addition, changes in the energy balance of the liver were proven. The observed metabolic changes were similar to changes observed in persons with type 2 diabetes or non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD). NAFLD is the most common liver disease in the industrial nations and associated with obesity, the so-called “metabolic syndrome,” and is associated with an increased risk in developing type 2 diabetes. Furthermore, NAFLD in advanced stages can result in severe liver damage.

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  16. New Mechanisms of Gene Inactivation may prevent Aging and Cancer
    03/03/2017 · FLI Leibniz Institute on Aging

    Every cell in our body contains the complete DNA library. So-called methyl groups regulate that in body tissues only the genetic information is expressed that is indeed needed in this tissue. Now, for the first time, researchers from the Leibniz Institute on Aging in Jena, Germany, verified that a lack of methyl groups in the gene body leads to an incorrect gene activation and, as a consequence, may lead to the emergence of cancer. The stunning results were published in the renowned Journal Nature on February 22, 2017.

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  17. Combating Iron in the Brain: Researchers Find Anti-Aging Micromolecule
    02/14/2017 · FLI Leibniz Institute on Aging

    During aging as well as during Alzheimer’s or Parkinson’s disease, iron accumulates in the human brain. Now, researchers from German Leibniz Institute on Aging (FLI) in Jena and Italian Scuola Normale Superiore (SNS) in Pisa found that in vertebrates, a microRNA called miR-29 inhibits these deposits – possibly offering new ways to treat Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease as well as strokes. Results were published in the Journal BMC Biology on February 13, 2017.

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