Nutraceuticals to mitigate immunosenescence and aging

Mounting evidence shows that among other health benefits, nutraceuticals can promote healthy aging.

Accumulation of senescent cells in tissues and organs is a hallmark of aging and has been implicated in various age-related diseases and inflammaging. This accumulation of old cells in tissues and organs over the years is an important factor driving the gradual decline in our body’s physiological functions that occur during aging [1, 2].

Longevity.Technology: This natural process of “tissue aging” affects virtually every cell type, tissue, organ and physiological system of our body – and the immune system is no exception! In fact, the relationship between the immune system and aging is twofold:

The gradual decline in the immune system’s function impairs the ability of immune cells to clear up old cells, and aging leads to immune cell senescence – is also known as immunosenescence [3].

In view of the multi-faceted links between immunosenescence and aging, targeting immunosenescence has emerged as an attractive strategy to circumvent the gradual accumulation of senescent cells, among other aspects of aging. Nutrients and food-derived supplements with medical or health benefits – also known as nutraceuticals – have gained increasing attention as a safe intervention to promote Longevity [3]. They’re quicker to market and have fewer pipeline risks.

As highlighted in a review article, published in the journal Ageing Research Reviews [3], Rohit Sharma and Yogendra Padwad of the Institute of Himalayan Bioresource Technology, Palampur identify that nutraceuticals’ ability to extend healthy life is largely attributed to their strong immunomodulatory effects and their capacity to target senescent cells.

 


 

… several phytochemicals have been shown to mitigate inflammaging, suppress replicative senescence and boost the activation of innate immune cells …

 


 

Mounting evidence shows that the bioactive ingredients phytochemicals, probiotic bacteria and omega-3-fatty acids exert potent anti-cellular senescence and anti-immunosenescence effects that go beyond enhancing the ability of immune cells to eliminate old and damaged cells.

For instance, several phytochemicals have been shown to mitigate inflammaging, suppress replicative senescence and boost the activation of innate immune cells and CD8+ T cells. Similarly, studies in mice and humans have shown that Lactobacilli species enhance the function of innate and adaptive immune cells and inhibit cell senescence. In humans, consumption of fish oil – which is high in omega-3-fatty acids – reduced inflammaging and enhanced innate and adaptive immunity in elderly individuals [3].

Based on such scientific evidence, the personalised medicine biotech Fargon has recently invested in developing innovative immune-boosting nutraceuticals that potentially prevent aging and age-related pathologies [4].

 


“… nothing in modern research has failed so spectacularly as developing a cure for Alzheimer’s disease. Treatment won’t work, we need to stop the disease before it manifests.”

 


 

“We know a diet rich in omega-3s can help prevent heart disease, and calcium intake can slow/prevent osteoporosis, so what about the brain and dementia?” says Dr Shawn Watson, founder of Senescence Life Sciences, a company aiming to combat brain aging using nutraceuticals. “After 30 years, hundreds of trials and billions upon billions of investments, nothing in modern research has failed so spectacularly as developing a cure for Alzheimer’s disease. Treatment won’t work, we need to stop the disease before it manifests. It’s time for a new approach, one that focuses on health and prevention rather than treatment – which is the basis of our company and our research.”

Despite accumulating evidence supporting the use of nutraceuticals to extend life and promote healthy aging, future comprehensive human studies are required to better understand the complex relationship between immunosenescence, cellular senescence, and aging, as well as confirm the preventive and therapeutic potential of nutrition-based immunomodulatory interventions against aging.

[1] https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0047637420301536
[2] https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6773825/
[3] https://doi.org/10.1016/j.arr.2020.101141
[4] https://bit.ly/34jaNfK

Image credit: Image by HeungSoonPixabay

 

 

Christos Evangelou
Since the completion of his undergraduate and doctoral studies in Molecular Biosciences, Christos has been working in the medical communications industry, driven by his passion for communicating sciences. Apart from helping researchers to publish their studies, Christos writes articles related to sciences and medicine.

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