Faculty Research in the News

Extending lifespan has mixed effects on learning and memory

5/20/09 - Coleen Murphy [], an Assistant Professor of molecular biology and member of the Lewis-Sigler Institute, and her lab have shown that the same mechanisms that extend longevity by reducing activity in the insulin-signaling pathway - a chain of events through which insulin influences numerous biological processes, including metabolism, stress response and development -  also have an impact on cognitive function.  By studying worms, the scientists were able to analyze the effects of caloric restriction and reduced insulin signaling on declines in learning and memory brought on by age. The findings have implications for the development of treatments that simultaneously help people live longer and prevent the devastating losses in memory that so often occur with age. Their results are published in the May 18 edition of the journal Public Library of Science Biology []. (read more [])

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