Compounds that confer thermal stress resistance and extended lifespan

Michael G Benedetti, Amanda L Foster, Maithili C Vantipalli, Mark P White, James N Sampayo, Matthew S Gill, Anders Olsen, Gordon J Lithgow

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

66 Citations (Scopus)


The observation that long-lived and relatively healthy animals can be obtained by simple genetic manipulation prompts the search for chemical compounds that have similar effects. Since aging is the most important risk factor for many socially and economically important diseases, the discovery of a wide range of chemical modulators of aging in model organisms could prompt new strategies for attacking age-related disease such as diabetes, cancer and neurodegenerative disorders [Collins, J.J., Evason, K., Kornfeld, K., 2006. Pharmacology of delayed aging and extended lifespan of Caenorhabditis elegans. Exp. Gerontol.; Floyd, R.A., 2006. Nitrones as therapeutics in age-related diseases. Aging Cell 5, 51-57; Gill, M.S., 2006. Endocrine targets for pharmacological intervention in aging in Caenorhabditis elegans. Aging Cell 5, 23-30; Hefti, F.F., Bales, R., 2006. Regulatory issues in aging pharmacology. Aging Cell 5, 3-8]. Resistance to multiple types of stress is a common trait in long-lived genetic variants of a number of species; therefore, we have tested compounds that act as stress response mimetics. We have focused on compounds with antioxidant properties and identified those that confer thermal stress resistance in the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans. Some of these compounds (lipoic acid, propyl gallate, trolox and taxifolin) also extend the normal lifespan of this simple invertebrate, consistent with the general model that enhanced stress resistance slows aging.

Original languageEnglish
JournalExperimental Gerontology
Issue number10
Pages (from-to)882-91
Number of pages10
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2008
Externally publishedYes


  • Animals
  • Antioxidants/pharmacology
  • Caenorhabditis elegans/genetics
  • Caenorhabditis elegans Proteins/genetics
  • Endocrine System/metabolism
  • Genes, Helminth/drug effects
  • Longevity/drug effects
  • Models, Biological
  • Oxidative Stress/drug effects


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