Rationale and methods of discovering hormetins as drugs for healthy ageing

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Introduction:
Mild stress-induced hormesis is becoming increasingly attractive as an aging interventional strategy, and is leading to the discovery of hormesis-inducing compounds called homretins. This review gives the background, rationale and approaches for screening, testing and developing novel hormetins.

Areas covered:
Almost fifty years of modern biogerontolgical research has established a clear framework regarding the biological basis of aging and longevity, and it is now generally accepted that aging occurs in spite of the presence of complex pathways of maintenance, repair and defence, and there is no “enemy within”. This viewpoint makes modulation of aging different from the treatment of one or more age-related diseases. A promising strategy to slow down aging and prevent or delay the onset of age-related diseases is that of mild stress-induced hormesis by using hormetins. Physical, nutritional and mental hormetins, which initiate stress responses and stimulate maintenance and repair pathways, are potentially effective aging modulators. The rationale and a strategy for discovering novel hormetins as potential drugs for aging intervention are presented, by elucidating multiple stress responses of normal human cells. Establishing immediate and delayed stress response profiles, followed by cell type-specific functional assays, after exposure to natural or synthetic compounds and mixtures, is the first step in identifying prospective hormetin drugs. A recent example of a successful product development based in the ideas of hormesis and by following the strategy described here is a skin care cosmetic.

Expert opinion:
As a biomedical issue, the biological process of aging underlies several major diseases, and although the optimal treatment of every disease, irrespective of age, is a social and moral necessity, preventing the onset of age-related diseases by intervening in the basic process of aging is the best approach for achieving healthy aging and for extending the health-span.
OriginalsprogEngelsk
TidsskriftExpert Opinion on Drug Discovery
Vol/bind7
Nummer5
Sider (fra-til)439-448
Antal sider10
ISSN1746-0441
DOI
StatusUdgivet - 20 maj 2012

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